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Last Updated: Friday, 7 November, 2003, 21:12 GMT
Edinburgh ease aside Munster
CELTIC LEAGUE
Edinburgh's Todd Blackadder
Edinburgh (13) 20
Tries: A. Hogg, A. Dall.
Cons: Laney 2.
Pens: Laney 2.
Munster (6) 9
Pens: O'Sullivan 3.
Att: 2,300

Edinburgh lost captain Todd Blackadder to a hand injury as they kickstarted their Celtic League campaign with a hard-fought victory at home to Munster.

Blackadder was forced to leave the fray midway through the first half - and then centre Tom Philip was taken off with a knee problem.

Munster went into attack from the outset and rocked Edinburgh by taking the lead with a penalty by Conrad O'Sullivan.

But the home side were stung into action at the other end.

Inspired by a try-saving tackle by Hugo Southwell on Martin McPhail, they levelled with a long-range Brendan Laney kick.

The man left behind as the Scots headed for the World Cup grabbed the lead in identical fashion before Andy Dall claimed the crucial opening try following a well-controlled maul.

Laney managed another penalty from a wide angle.

But, with Derrick Lee in the sin bin, Munster clawed back three points thanks to O'Sullivan before the break.

Edinburgh found themselves under heavy pressure after the restart yet still added to their advantage.

They cashed in on a Munster knock-on to race up field, where Marcus Di Rollo and Simon Webster combined to send Ally Hogg cruising in under the posts to give Laney an easy conversion.

O'Sullivan reduced the leeway with his third penalty, but Edinburgh held out for the vital win.

Assistant coach Henry Edwards said: "We showed great discipline in defence and recovered well after a nervy start."


Edinburgh: Lee, Webster, Joiner, Philip, Southwell, Laney, Lawson, Smith, Kellock, Mathieson, Perrett, Kelly, Blackadder, Cross, A. Hogg.
Replacements: Di Ciacca, Brannigan, Pike, A. Dall, Burns, Walker, Di Rollo.

Munster: Crotty, McPhail, Mullins, O'Sullivan, Lawlor, Holland, Reddan, Kerr, Long, Roche, Hogan, Keogh, Leamy, McMahon, Williams.
Replacements: Blaney, McGovern, D. Sheahan, T. Hayes, F. Murphy, Matthews, Casey.

Referee: Hugh Watkins (Welsh RFU)


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