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Munster (10) 25 - 11 (11) Leinster,
Thomond Park, Limerick,
Att: 13,200,
Referee: Alan Lewis,
Wednesday, 27th December 2006,

Leinster took on Munster for the first time in over ten years in Thomond Park, hoping to keep touch with the top of the Magners League leaderboard. The lineup saw a full start for Jonathan Sexton, with a return to the bench for Felipe Contepomi following injury. Sexton settled well and put Leinster into an early lead with a 5th minute penalty.

The first half was a close affair, with the only tries of the game coming in the period. Munster had referee Lewis to thank for their 5 points as they were awarded a penalty try in the 13th minute, which O'Gara converted. Leinster crossed the line to reduce the arrears within 7 minutes when an excellent run by Denis Hickie created the space to put in Girvan Dempsey. A Sexton Penalty just before half time gave the visitors the narrowest of half time advantages.

Leinster were unable to capitalise on their lead after the break and failed to score, as Munster dominated territory. Sexton came the closest missing a 46th minute penalty. The referee awarded Munster 5 kickable penalties in the second period, and O'Gara obliged with each.

While the match saw the return of Contepomi for Leinster from injury, Girvan Dempsey left the field with what looked a bad ankle injury, and faces some time on the sidelines.

Match Stats
  Munster Leinster
Tries Penalty Try - 13 Dempsey - 20
Cons O'Gara  
Penalties O'Gara (6) Sexton (2)
Teams Shaun Payne, John Kelly, Barry Murphy, Trevor Halstead, Ian Dowling , Ronan O'Gara, Peter Stringer, Federico Pucciariello, Frankie Sheahan, John Hayes, DonnchaO'Callaghan, Paul O'Connell, John O'Sullivan,David Wallace, Denis Leamy. Girvan Dempsey, Shane Girvan Dempsey, Shane Horgan, Brian O'Driscoll, Gordon D'Arcy, Denis Hickie, Jonathan Sexton , Guy Easterby, Ronan McCormack, Bernard Jackman, Stan Wright, Trevor Hogan, Malcolm O'Kelly Stephen Keogh , Keith Gleeson, Jamie Heaslip.
Replacements Hurley for Pucciariello (64), Coughlan for O'Sullivan (78). Kearney for Dempsey (48), Jowitt for Keogh (59), Finegan for O'Kelly (61), Whitaker for Easterby (64), Pala'amo for Wright (68), Contepomi for Sexton (68).

by Sarah Lennon, © 2006-12-27