Round-up: JJ Hanrahan stars with late, late try for Munster


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The Independent Online

Munster just don’t know when to give up in the Heineken Cup.

Perpignan were fighting for their lives and seemed to have secured victory with only three minutes to play when Tommaso Benvenuti’s try gave them a 17-13 lead, but they had not reckoned with JJ Hanrahan.

Sent on from the bench to replace Keith Earls on the wing as the Perpignan celebrations died down, he sped down the right wing in the last play of the match, produced a stunning sidestep 25 metres out and touched down out wide.

After an agonising wait while the referee JP Doyle checked the effort with the TMO the score was given to hand the 2006 and 2008 champions a third win in four pool games.

Munster control Pool 4, in which Gloucester play Edinburgh in the West Country today.

Tommy Allan had given Perpignan a 9-3 lead at half-time with three penalties gave Perpignan a 9-3 lead as Ian Keatley managed only one in reply. The second half began with concerted pressure from Munster, which paid off when they forced a penalty try in the 48th minute. An exchange of penalties between Allan and Keatley set the game up for its dramatic finale.

England fly-half Owen Farrell inspired Saracens to keep up the pressure at the top of Pool 3, inspiring his side to a 64-7 victory over Zebre, who they had beaten 39-10 a week earlier. Mark McCall’s men scored nine tries, with Duncan Taylor claiming two of them, as Saracens ensured qualification by taking maximum points.

Farrell had a fine day with the boot. After kicking his only penalty in the first minute, he converted eight of the tries.

Ulster kept their march towards qualification on track with a straightforward 35-3 victory away to Treviso in Pool 5. They ran in four tries from Luke Marshall, Craig Gilroy, Robbie Diack and the full-back Jared Payne. Paddy Jackson converted three of them and kicked three penalties.

In Pool 3 of the Amlin Challenge Cup Newcastle Falcons did most of the hard work in the first half as they defeated Calvisano 25-10 at Stadio Peroni.

The young wing Zach Kibirige set them on their way with the opening score of the match, going over after five minutes and wrapping up Newcastle’s scoring with another try in the 52nd minute. Rory Clegg scored Newcastle’s other try. Kele Hehea scored Calvisano’s only try in the 58th minute.