Sunday 22 April 2018

Neville stars as Munster land title

Leinster 3
Munster 21

MUNSTER won the Women's Inter-Provincial Championship for the fifth time in a row with a three-try demolition of their old rivals in the final at Donnybrook on Saturday.

The defending champions had far too much for Leinster, with their outstanding No 8 Joy Neville playing at a different level to everyone else.

The visitors showed their versatility in putting together three different types of tries. First, front-row forward Christine Fanning was the beneficiary from a textbook line-out and maul from five metres out.

Then, Ireland full-back Niamh Briggs' delicious blind pass sent wing Sarah Jane Cody over on the short side to double the lead in the 32nd minute.

Leinster centre Nora Stapleton cut the deficit to 10-3 with a penalty just before the interval.

It was still all to play for until loosehead prop Laura Guest put Munster five points further clear in the 44th minute, and Briggs emphasised the gap in overall ability with two penalties in injury-time.

LEINSTER -- G Nolan; K Fitzhenry (T Breen 60), N Stapleton, M Ross, C Kennedy; P Fitzpatrick, A Davis; A Egan (K-A Craddock 77), S Crosby (C Morey h-t), E McManamaly, M L Reilly, R Vickers, S Ryan (capt), L Haley, D O'Brien (O Fitzsimons 68).

MUNSTER -- N Briggs; N Kavanagh (H Brosnan 68), M Kelly, G Rea, S J Cody (N Scully 78); H Brosnan (O Stapleton 54), L Beamish ( C Bracken 78); L Guest (D Hughes 68), C Fanning (F Reidy 78), G Bourke; H O'Brien, K Casey; L Austin (H Jones 78), S Fleming (O Buckley 78), J Neville (capt).

REF -- D Wallace (Leinster Branch).

Irish Independent

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