Saturday 10 December 2016

Ludik says it's 'crunch time' in Ulster chase for home semi

Published 05/05/2015 | 02:30

Ulster full-back Louis Ludik has said that it is “crunch time” for his side as they prepare for a defining interprovincial battle with Munster in Thomond Park this weekend (Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE)
Ulster full-back Louis Ludik has said that it is “crunch time” for his side as they prepare for a defining interprovincial battle with Munster in Thomond Park this weekend (Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE)

Ulster full-back Louis Ludik has said that it is "crunch time" for his side as they prepare for a defining interprovincial battle with Munster in Thomond Park this weekend which will go a long way towards determining who gets the vital home draw in the Pro12 play-offs.

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"The guys are really up for it," says the former Sharks' full-back who has been a revelation for Ulster this season. "The team are rested and we have been well managed over the past few weeks. Everyone knows it's crunch time. We are playing for a home play-off and that would be massive.

"It's so tight at the top of the Pro12. It would be awesome to have a home play-off, but if you take your eye off what's in front of you, then it's gone.

"We just have to take it each game at a time. Obviously Munster is first. It's a must-win for us and we will be ready.

Crucial

"We are sitting in a good spot but these next few games are so important. It's a bit like in golf, these last few putts are going to be crucial."

Ludik believes that with at least three crucial matches coming up, having the benefit of senior players like Rory Best, Tommy Bowe, Jared Payne and Iain Henderson is crucial because of the experience and winning mentality that they bring.

"You can feel the presence of senior guys coming through. They are patient and they bring confidence to games. When things are tough, everyone is calm and everyone knows that we just need to keep doing what we do.

"Like last week against Leinster, when were 10-0 down. We knew we hadn't had the ball, so we just knew that we had to get our hands on it and play like we know we can. It makes a massive difference when those experienced guys are in the team - they are special players."

Irish Independent

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