Simon Zebo impressed as Munster got back on track in the URC last night.
Ireland star Simon Zebo scored a hatrick of tries as Munster secured a bonus point win over Edinburgh last night. Munster ran out 34-20 winners over Edinburgh at Thomond Park. This win moves Munster up to third place in the URC table behind only two other Irish provinces in Leinster and Ulster.
Zebo bagged his first try right on the stroke of halftime, off a well worked overlap. Following a nice break from Munster fullback Mike Haley, Zebo finished having beaten Edinburgh centre, Mark Bennett to the tryline. Flyhalf Ben Healy set up Zebo for his third on the 76th minute having drawn two defenders putting Zebo in space down the touchline.
Ireland head coach Andy Farrell selected Zebo in his squad for last years Autumn Nations Series. Ireland had comprehensive victories over Japan and Argentina, however the key win was their one against the All Blacks. It was only Ireland’s third ever victory against New Zealand and their second at the Aviva Stadium. Farrell elected to not use Zebo during the Autumn window, with Zebo ending up with no minutes.
Following a few injuries leading up to Christmas and Munster’s covid nightmare in South Africa during the URC, Zebo had little minutes coming into the Six Nations and failed to impress for Munster. Andy Farrell chose to not pick Zebo for his 2022 Six Nations Squad and instead elected to pick Andrew Conway, Robert Balacoune, Keith Earls and the uncapped Mack Hansen instead. It is important to note that James Lowe was the starting left winger for Ireland in the Autumn, playing key roles in the victories against Japan and New Zealand. Hansen and Conway were picked as the starting wingers in the opening two games of the 2022 Six Nations campaign. Hansen made an impressive impact in the Irish jersey earning the Player of the Match accolade against Wales. Hansen went on to score a superb try the following week for Ireland in Paris against France.
Over a three year period Zebo made a name for himself in the Top 14 making 60 appearances for Racing 92 and scoring 125 points. Racing has a star-studded backline with the likes of Finn Russell, Virimi Vakatawa, Juan Imhoff and Kurtley Beale. All who complimented Zebos’ play. Zebo’s hatrick last night I’m sure has come to Andy Farrell’s attention as he looks at his back three depth chart for Ireland.