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Toulon 32-16 Munster

Toulon (26) 32
Tries: Loamanu, Sackey Cons: Wilkinson 2 Pens: Wilkinson 6
Munster (9) 16
Try: Wallace Con: O'Gara 2 Pens: O'Gara 3

Toulon's Jonny Wilkinson is tackled by Wian du Preez and Paul O'Connell of Munster
Wilkinson - being tackled by Du Preez and O'Connell - kicked 22 points

Two-time winners Munster have failed to reach the Heineken Cup quarter-finals for the first time in 13 years after Sunday's heavy loss away to Toulon.

Jonny Wilkinson kicked 22 of the points for Toulon who are guaranteed to finish top of a hotly contested Pool Three.

Tongan-born Japanese international Christian Loamanu and England's Paul Sackey scored the home side's tries.

David Wallace scored the only try for Munster who had Donncha O'Callaghan and Ronan O'Gara sin-binned.

Munster had gone into the game lying two points behind Toulon and knowing a win was necessary.

They got off to a good start when veteran Irish fly-half O'Gara sent over a penalty but Wilkinson replied with three successful kicks for Toulon.

The French side had Munster penned back and scored the opening try on 24 minutes as Pierre Mignoni chipped over the top and winger Loamanu jumped to gather the ball and score in the left corner.

Wilkinson's conversion left Munster trailing 16-3.

O'Gara soon cut the deficit with a penalty but then came O'Callaghan's yellow card for needlessly pulling back a Toulon player as he chased a kick through.

Toulon made the advantage count with Mignoni getting into the 22 before play was swept out to the right where Sackey touched down after some poor tackling from Keith Earls and Johne Murphy.

O'Gara replied with a penalty but Munster were still 17 points behind at half-time.

Wilkinson put Toulon 29-9 ahead with a penalty shortly after the restart.

Tony McGahan's men suffered a further setback when O'Gara was sin-binned after tangling off the ball with Mignoni.

Wilkinson then extended Toulon's lead before home prop Davit Kubriashvili was yellow-carded in the final quarter.

Flanker Wallace scored a consolation try with three minutes remaining, but Munster's proud record of making the knock-out stages in every season since 1998/99 was over.

Toulon: Wulf; Sackey, Lovobalavu, Contepomi, Loamanu; Wilkinson, Mignoni; Emmanuelli, Bruno, Kubriashvili, Samson, Schofield, Fernandez Lobbe, Smith, van Niekerk.

Replacements: Auelua for Lovobalavu (72), Lamont for Loamanu (65), Magnaval for Mignoni (59), Taumoepeau for Emmanuelli (52), Orioli for Bruno (61), Chesney for Schofield (61), El Abd for Smith (76), Merabet for van Niekerk (73).

Munster: Warwick; Howlett, Earls, Tuitupou, J Murphy; O'Gara, Stringer; Du Preez, Varley, J Hayes, D O'Callaghan, O'Connell, Coughlan, Wallace, Leamy.

Replacements: Mafi for Warwick (40), O'Leary for Stringer (49), D Hurley for du Preez (72), Sherry for Varley (78), Buckley for J Hayes (47), O'Driscoll for D O'Callaghan (61), Ronan for O'Connell (74), D Ryan for Coughlan (56).

Att: 13,500

Referee: Dave Pearson (England)

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see also
O'Connell banned for four weeks
16 Dec 10 |  Rugby Union

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