Wood turns screw in Cork

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The Independent Online

Keith Wood, a hero for both Ireland and the Lions, was the toast of Munster last night after his two tries against Colomiers in front of 8,000 spectators in Cork virtually sealed the province's place in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup. The 27-year-old hooker's double strike steered Munster to a 23-5 success and left them comfortably clear at the top of Pool 4.

Keith Wood, a hero for both Ireland and the Lions, was the toast of Munster last night after his two tries against Colomiers in front of 8,000 spectators in Cork virtually sealed the province's place in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup. The 27-year-old hooker's double strike steered Munster to a 23-5 success and left them comfortably clear at the top of Pool 4.

Only Saracens, who will need to win when they visit Ireland in three weeks time, can catch Munster whose other touchdown against Colomiers came from their full-back Dominic Crotty. Ronan O'Gara supplied two penalties and a conversion while the solitary French score came when the wing Patrick Martinez went over.

Toulouse, winners of the inaugural European Cup in 1996, look equally assured of a place in the last eight after beating Padova for the second successive weekend. On this occasion, the runaway Pool 2 leaders entertained the 6,000 crowd which assembled in the Stade des Sept Deniers by handing out a 51-0 thrashing. The wing Philippe Lapoutge and France lock Fabien Pelous each claimed two tries while two other internationals, the prop Christian Califano and the scrum-half Jerome Cazalbou, also crossed the Italians' line. A penalty try plus five penalties and two conversions from the former Saracens fly-half Alain Penaud completed the rout.

Another one-time wearer of the Sarries' No 10 shirt, Andy Lee, had a field day as London Welsh rattled up a 70-7 victory over visitors Rugby in Allied Dunbar Premiership Two. Lee's contribution was 30 points - a try, eight conversions and three penalties. Worcester head the table again after a 30-22 victory over Moseley in which the kicking of Ben Harvey tilted the balance in their favour. Rotherham are second on the same points after their 53-7 romp over Henley and Leeds, yesterday morning's leaders, slipped to third, despite also having 22 points, when their visit to Wakefield was postponed due to a frozen pitch.

Sebastian Fauque landed all eight of his conversion attempts and ran in a try to boot as Castres demolished Bedford 56-6 in Pool 2 of the European Shield. Ebbw Vale, equally dominant in Pool 4, showed no ill-effects from their journey to Romania as they got the better of Steaua Bucha-rest in a 43-27 thriller. Sale look to have left their surge in Pool 3 too late despite their 31-10 success at Caerphilly, but London Irish still have hopes of overhauling Agen at the top of Pool 7 after seeing off Roma 39-13.

Glasgow Hawks shaded the Scottish champions Heriot's FP 9-8 in the BT Cellnet Cup fourth round while Aberavon reached the sixth round of the Welsh Rugby Union Cup even though their tie against Wrexham was abandoned when they led 49-7 with nine minutes to go.

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