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Sharks suffer Siya Kolisi injury blow in tense draw with Munster

By PA
Siya Kolisi of Cell C Sharks during the United Rugby Championship match between Cell C Sharks and Leinster at Hollywoodbets Kings Park Stadium in Durban, South Africa. (Photo By Harry Murphy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Siya Kolisi’s Kings Park send-off was marred by a Sharks collapse and personal disappointment after he limped off early in the 22-22 draw with Munster in the United Rugby Championship.

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Kolisi, who will join Racing 92 after the World Cup, watched all but eight minutes of the draw from the stands after suffering a significant injury to his right knee, incurred during a tackle by Calvin Nash.

The second half will have been a hard watch for the South Africa captain as having seen the Sharks ease to a 22-3 lead, Munster then staged a fightback ignited by a penalty try.

Nash and Conor Murray added further tries and Munster staged a final assault that ended with them being held up over the line in overtime but the draw was enough to lift them above the Bulls into fifth place.

Once Kolisi had been patched up for an aborted attempt at playing on, a short-range maul allowed Bongi Mbonambi to peel free on the blindside to touch down.

The Sharks added a contentious second when Werner Kok rolled his way over the whitewash but the try was approved by the TMO.

For all their success in finding the line, the Durban-based team were losing key players at a worrying rate as fly-half Curwin Bosch followed Kolisi into the stands, also with a knee injury.

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Unperturbed, the Sharks kept on coming with number eight Sikhumbuzo Notshe the next to capitalise on a line-out maul following a strong carry by Mbonambi.

With wing Shane Daly in the sin-bin, Munster were up against it and they entered half-time 19-3 down without firing a shot.

Their outlook soon improved when replacement wing Aphelele Fassi was sin-binned for offside, in the process conceding a penalty try that offered a glimmer of hope.

Munster quickly saw the extra man wiped out when captain Peter O’Mahony was shown a yellow card for escalating a scuffle.

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But an opportunist try by Nash tilted the game on its axis and when Murray went over at the end of a maul for a try converted by Ben Healy, the score was level at 22-22.

Munster poured forward in the closing stages but could not finish the job.

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