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In Pics: Munster 37 Cardiff 8

In Pics: Munster 37 Cardiff 8

Click here for photos as Munster wrap up the Celtic League season with a five-try victory over Cardiff at a jam-packed Thomond Park.

Pictured above: John Kelly, who was voted man of the match thanks to a two-try salvo, is tackled by Cardiff centres Marc Stcherbina and Jamie Robinson. Kelly’s night turned sour in the closing minutes when he damaged his left shoulder and was replaced. His participation in Ireland’s summer tour to New Zealand and Australia could be in doubt.

Munster’s stand-in captain Mick O’Driscoll goes on the charge. Since returning from Perpignan last summer, the 6ft 5in O’Driscoll has been a model of consistency – playing in 18 of Munster’s 21 Celtic League games and making six appearances in the Heineken Cup. His only try this season also came in Europe – he touched down in the 30-18 pool defeat of the Dragons in December.

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Alan Quinlan climbs highest for a lineout with help from Trevor Hogan and Mick O’Driscoll. Quinlan did his chances of nabbing the final back row berth in the Irish squad to tour New Zealand and Australia no end of good with a very good showing over the 88 minutes at Thomond Park. A 50th-minute burst, during which he handed off John Yapp, was a particular highlight.

Trevor Hogan cannot prevent Cardiff hooker Duane Goodfield from notching his first League try after 19 minutes. Ireland lock Hogan, who won an AIB League Division One title with Shannon a fortnight ago, is joining Leinster in the summer.

Former Ireland and Lions centre Rob Henderson, whose career with Munster – which began back in November 2001 – ended on a winning note, tries to shrug off the tackles of Cardiff’s David Flanagan and Mark Lewis.

Munster’s Shaun Payne lines up a tackle on Cardiff scrum half Mike Phillips. The South African full back was making his 50th Celtic League appearance for Munster on Saturday – he previously played for Swansea, making 14 League appearances for the Welsh side during the 2001/02 and 2002/03 seasons.

Cardiff’s Marc Stcherbina feels the brunt of Denis Leamy’s left arm at Thomond Park. A blindside flanker? An openside? A number eight? A centre? The 25-year-old Leamy has done it all for Munster – 14 caps in the Heineken Cup, 44 in the Celtic League and Cup and still counting.

**All photos by Billy Stickland of Inpho Photography**