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Gunners back on song to stun Munster

Guinness PRO12 Editor 30 Sep 2011

Edinburgh bounced back from their demoralising Italian debacle to end reigning champions Munster’s perfect start to the RaboDirect PRO12 season.

Last weekend the Gunners became only the second team in the league’s history to lose to Aironi, slumping to a 26-19 defeat, but they were a changed team in front of 3467 at Murrayfield against the previously unbeaten champions.

And as a result Tony McGahan’s side lost their place at the top of the RaboDirect PRO12 table with the Ospreys maintaining their unbeaten start against Connacht to leapfrog the defending champions.

Edinburgh flew out of the blocks early on with three early penalties from the boot of scrum-half and captain Greig Laidlaw to open up a 9-0 lead after 15 minutes.

And their domination was rewarded further when Matthew Scott, on his 21st birthday, scored the opening try of the game after great build-up work from back row colleagues David Denton and Stuart McInally.

Laidlaw added the extras to make it 16-0 at the halfway point of the first half, but rather than push on, the home side allowed the reigning champions to work their way back into the game.

Ian Keatley added three penalties for the Munstermen who trailed 16-9 at the break and looked to be right back in the game.

Rather than panic, Gunners coach Michael Bradley managed to rally his troops at half-time and Laidlaw added another penalty immediately to stretch the lead out to ten points.

And it got even better just two minutes later as hooker Steven Lawrie crashed over for the home side’s second try.

Fly-half Gregor Hunter started a brilliant team move, with winger Lee Jones breaking before finding Laidlaw who moved the ball on to Lawrie to score. Laidlaw again added the conversion as Edinburgh moved 26-9 up with half an hour to go.

Unsurprisingly Munster responded by piling the pressure on the home side and there were a few nerves when centre Danny Barnes finished off a move to bring the score back to 26-14 with six minutes to go.

However Scott Deasy missed the extras, and Laidlaw added a further penalty to extend the lead to three scores and kill off any hopes of a comeback.