Munster 36-8 Ulster

MUNSTER (17) 36

  • Tries: Zebo, O'Mahony, Sherry, Archer, O'Donnell
  • Pens: Deasy
  • Cons: Deasy 3, Cusack

ULSTER (3) 8

  • Tries: Henderson
  • Pens: Jackson

Munster convincingly beat a spirited Ulster side to book a Pro12 semi-final date with the Ospreys next weekend.

Tries from Simon Zebo and Peter O'Mahony helped Munster to a 17-3 half-time lead, with Mike Sherry, Stephen Archer and Tommy O'Donnell adding further touchdowns after the break.

Simon Deasy kicked 15 points, with Declan Cusack adding a conversion.

Paddy Jackson landed a penalty while Iain Henderson marked his first Ulster start with a fine individual try.

The Ulster side showed 10 changes from that which beat Edinburgh in the semi-final of the Heineken Cup last week, with Ireland Under-20 flanker Henderson the most notable inclusion among the forwards.

The Munster forwards established their dominance early on and drove 15 metres after a lineout to set up Zebo for the opening try in the seventh minute.

Conor Murray fed Felix Jones and he passed to Zebo, who touched down in the corner, Deasy adding the conversion.

Winger Andrew Trimble was unfortunate to receive a yellow card soon after for allegedly pulling the jersey of winger Zebo.

Deasy knocked over the resulting penalty, but Jackson was accurate with his first penalty attempt to reduce the deficit to 10-3.

Fly-half Deasy was off-target with his next kick at the posts but an O'Mahony try in the final minute of the half, converted by Deasy, gave Munster a 17-3 advantage at the interval.

Sherry scored Munster's third try in the 50th minute when he was driven over by the Munster forwards after his side won a lineout.

The conversion from Deasy extended the home team's lead to 21 points.

Henderson then gave Ulster some hope by scoring a fine indivdual try on 53 minutes.

The flanker shrugged off a couple of challenges and showed a good turn of pace before stretching out to ground the ball over the line.

Jackson was unable to add the additional two points on this occasion.

Retiring second row Mick O'Driscoll received a large ovation when leaving the pitch to be replaced, but it was a less happy exit for fellow lock Paul O'Connell, who hobbled off injured.

Replacement Archer went over for a try in the 76th minute to secure the bonus point, Declan Cusack kicking the conversion.

Munster added their fifth try in added time when Tommy O'Donnell took advantage of a turnover to show a clean pair of heels to the Ulster defence and dive over in the corner.

Cusack was wide with his conversion attempt.

Munster: F Jones; J Murphy, I Dineen, L Mafi, S Zebo; S Deasy, C Murray; W du Preez, M Sherry, BJ Botha; M O'Driscoll, P O'Connell; D Ryan, T O'Donnell, P O'Mahony.

Replacements: D Varley, D Kilcoyne, S Archer, D O'Callaghan, P Butler, T O'Leary, K Earls.

Ulster: A D'Arcy; A Trimble, N Spence, I Whitten, C Cochrane; P Jackson, P Marshall; P McAllister, N Brady, D Fitzpatrick, L Stevenson, D Tuohy, I Henderson, W Faloon, R Diack.

Replacements: N Annett, C Black, T Court, M McComish, A Birch, B McIlroy, I Humphreys, C Gilroy