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Sunday 22 October 2017

Munster do it their way to lead Pool 1

Winning is the only currency that cannot be devalued around Munster.

The fact that the ball spent more time in the air over Thomond Park than a flight out of Shannon won't worry them too much as they hold an advantage over Saracens and Clermont-Auvergne in Pool 1.

What Munster did was to take Saracens on at their own game, turn them relentlessly in a kicking dual, with Ian Keatley to the fore, that was emphatically won by the Irish province.

"We knew it was fine margins out there," said coach Anthony Foley.

There was a break-even feel to the exchanges before French referee Jerome Garces binned replacement prop Rhys Gill for lifting Peter O'Mahony's legs above the horizontal in a tackle.

It was all the opening Munster needed to fire up and a subtle shift in direction of a maul was the turbo-boost loose-head Dave Kilcoyne needed for the only try of the game.

"The boys never flinched out there and they made sure that when they got into the opposition 22, they were ruthless," said Foley.

"To get an away win in the first round and back it up the following week with a six-day turnaround with a very physical performance is something special these guys can take away".

Munster will tuck away the eight points that sees them lead this quartet, return to the nuts and bolts of the Guinness PRO12 unsafe in the knowledge that Clermont will be ready in the back-to-back rounds three and four.

"It's good to be in this position. But we know there are going to be twists and turns along this road," said Foley.

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