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Munster mauled at home as Tigers clinch crucial win

By Staff Reporter

Leicester Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill says next Sunday's return fixture with Munster at Welford Road is "absolutely critical" to their hopes of qualifying for the knockout stages of the European Champions Cup.

Clinical Leicester became the first team to win twice at Thomond Park in European competition after securing an exciting 31-19 victory over Anthony Foley's misfiring Munster side.

Leicester, who led 18-6 at half-time, outscored their opponents by three tries to two - Vereniki Goneva, Mike Fitzgerald and Ben Youngs (above) all touched down - to take a firm grip on Pool 4 ahead of next weekend's rematch.

"For Leicester Tigers, next week's game is the most important of the pool," a pleased Cockerill said afterwards, with his charges now nine points clear at the top of the table.

"If we can win next week, then in round five we entertain Treviso. If we win next week that will put us on 18 points with Treviso to come at home. That clearly puts us in a good position to qualify from the group."

This was just the fifth time in 67 matches that Munster had failed to win at home in European competition.

Head coach Anthony Foley was a frustrated figure after the game.

"It can be turned around in a week," he said. "We created enough opportunities. We turned over a lot of ball in their 22. I thought at times the boys played well. It was just having the ability to keep the pressure on the opposition and we took the foot off too many times."

Belfast Telegraph


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