Sloppy Munster slip to defeat
Published 24/02/2013 | 17:06
Munster endured a miserable trip to Italy on Sunday afternoon as they were resoundingly beaten 34-10 by Treviso at the Stadio di Monigo.
While the Irish national team were going down to Scotland at Murrayfield, Munster were going through similar tribulations on the continent as Treviso secured a bonus-point win.
It was just the outcome Rob Penney's side wanted to avoid in the wake of their disappointing 18-10 loss to Scarlets last time out, with Munster sixth in the RaboDirect PRO12 table, half-a-dozen points behind fourth-placed Ospreys.
Treviso sit behind them in the ladder, a fact which makes their performance on Sunday all the more surprising, but it was a thoroughly deserved win for the Italians who were ahead three minutes in when winger Ludovic Nitoglia raced in under the sticks, giving Alberto Di Bernardo a simple conversion.
Ian Keatley frittered away a chance to reduce the gap when he dragged a penalty wide before Di Bernardo followed suit, although Filippo Giusti was soon touching down to make that irrelevant.
The try had been on the cards and only a fine Johne Murphy tackle stopped Giulio Toniolatti making it three early touchdowns, before Keatley found his range with a three-pointer.
Gideon la Grange poured water on any revival hopes, though, scoring a try that was converted by Di Bernardo and, when the fly-half tagged a penalty, it gave Treviso a 22-3 half-time lead.
The sin-binning of home hooker Giovanni Maistri at least gave Munster a second-half breather, with a penalty try and Keatley conversion giving them a sniff with 30 minutes left.
There was no grandstand finish, however, as Treviso got their bonus point as Fabio Semenzato dotted down on the hour and Toniolatti did the same with two minutes left, Di Bernardo converting one of them.