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banner Saturday, 21 October, 2000, 13:36 GMT 14:36 UK
Munster maintain unbeaten start
Alan Quinlan evades Dan Lyle during Munster's win
Alan Quinlan evades Dan Lyle during Munster's win
Munster 31-9 Bath

Three second-half tries preserved Munster's unbeaten start to their Heineken Cup campaign at Thomond Park.

Last season's finalists took advantage of Bath's inability to retain possession for any length of time and their numerous errors to hold onto top spot in Pool 4.

Anthony Horgan scored two tries, the first six minutes after the interval and the second right on full-time to seal the Irish side's win.

The sides had gone into the break with Munster leading 6-3 after two Ronan O'Gara penalties and one to Jon Preston, but the home side struck early in the second half to stretch the lead.

Munster 31Tries: Horgan 2, Wallace; Cons: O'Gara 2; Pens: O'Gara 3; Drop Goal: O'Gara
Bath 9 Pens: Preston 3.

Horgan's try came after Bath hooker Mark Regan was in the sin-bin after an indiscretion.

The winger was at the end of a sweeping move between backs and forwards that stretched the Bath defence before being rounded off by the 24-year-old.

Two Preston penalties kept Bath in touch, but when David Wallace dotted down under the posts after good work by Jason Holland, Bath's fate was determined.

Horgan's second came right at the end after Bath, forced into attempting to run the ball, lost possession and Munster's pack drove up just short of the line.

Deft pass

The ball came to O'Gara who deftly slipped an inside pass to Horgan to put him in under the posts.

O'Gara finished with 16 points, while Preston kicked all of Bath's points.

Bath coach Jon Callard Callard said: "Not many sides come here with a sniff of winning and, with 10 minutes to go, we were only 14-9 behind.

"The next 10 minutes were really a blur," he added, referring to the 17-point blitz Munster delivered.

Schoolboy errors

"In that situation you secure possession and work your way out of trouble. The mistakes we made were schoolboyish."

The two sides meet again next week at the Recreation Ground and Callard said: "We need to do something on our own pitch. We owe it to our supporters who've travelled all this way this weekend and we owe it to ourselves."

Munster coach Declan Kidney said: "To win at Bath will be a monumental task exceeding anything we've done to date. We were under no illusions that we had to win today."

We were under no illusions that we had to win today
  Declan Kidney, Munster coach
Former All Black Preston put the visitors in the lead after 17 minutes with a penalty after an earlier attempt fell short from 55 metres.

Munster's woes at going behind were compounded when flanker Alan Quinlan was sin-binned for an offence when the home side were in an attacking position.

But O'Gara landed two penalties to have the home side leading at the change of ends.

Bath failed to establish any continuity and their lack of a cutting edge ultimately cost them dear.

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