Briggs drives Munster to back-to-back glory
Published 07/09/2015 | 02:30
Munster's women made it two interprovincial titles in a row as they put in an impressive performance to beat Leinster 15-7 in Thomond Park.
From kick-off, the women in red made their intentions clear, dominating possession in the opening quarter thanks to an imperious display from their back-row of Tralee duo Siobhan Fleming and Ciara Griffin, and 2015 Six Nations medal winner Heather O'Brien.
However, it took until the 20-minute mark for Munster to open the scoring.
Referee Helen O'Reilly awarded the hosts a penalty, with captain and out-half Niamh Briggs opting to kick into Leinster's 22 for a lineout. From this, Munster drove a powerful maul, which allowed tighthead prop Leah Lyons crash over. Briggs duly converted.
Leinster began to claw their way back into the game. Before the interval, full-back Jeamie Deacon dotted down. Nora Stapleton added the extras.
The half-time score was seven points apiece. In the opening minutes of the second half, Leinster applied pressure, but Munster began to turn the screw.
Young scrum-half Ellen Murphy controlled the game. At 56 minutes, Briggs nailed a penalty to edge her side ahead.
Leinster regained their composure, but a clearance kick from Briggs was fumbled into touch. Munster drove forward from the lineout, with Briggs scoring the try on 62 minutes.
The Waterford woman missed the resulting conversion.
The scoreline remained 15-7 to Munster as they kept Leinster at bay to seal the interprovincial crown.
At Portadown RFC, a dogged Connacht side ground down Ulster with a final scoreline of 15-12 as they sealed third place.