Friday 30 September 2016

Grenoble lined up for pre-season

John Fallon

Published 24/04/2015 | 02:30

29 January 2011; Young Munster head coach Mike Prendergast speaking to his players. Ulster Bank League Division 1A, St Mary's College v Young Munster, Templeville Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Matt Browne / SPORTSFILE
29 January 2011; Young Munster head coach Mike Prendergast speaking to his players. Ulster Bank League Division 1A, St Mary's College v Young Munster, Templeville Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Matt Browne / SPORTSFILE

Former Munster scrum-half Mike Prendergast will return to the province this summer when his Grenoble side take on Anthony Foley's men in a pre-season friendly.

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Prendergast, who played 45 times for Munster and who coached Young Munster, has been making a big impression in France, where Grenoble have established themselves in the Top 14.

Former Leinster, Connacht and Ireland hooker Bernard Jackman is in charge there with Prendergast as assistant coach.

Andrew Farley, who played 149 times in six seasons with Connacht, is now team manager with Grenoble, having skippered them to promotion from the ProD2.

The Irish influence at the club is increased with Clontarf native James Hart and former Ulster centre Chris Farrell on the playing roster at the Alps club.

They will provide good opposition for Munster, who also travel to the Sportsground to take on Connacht in the build-up to the 2015-16 season.

But of more immediate concern is tomorrow's key Pro12 clash against Benetton Treviso at Irish Independent Park in Cork.

And Foley knows that they will face a tough test even though Treviso are second from bottom - the visitors' battle with Zebre for the Italian Champions Cup spot ensures they have a lot to play for.

"The Italian teams are tough outfits anyway full stop. Every game we've played against them, it's hard, physical and normally comes down to who flinches first," said Foley.

"It's important that we're switched on. We've got to understand that they've a lot to play and a lot in their season left and when you come up against a side that other teams struggle to play against, you have to respect them.

"We'll treat them the same way as we treated the Edinburghs, Glasgows and Leinsters of this world when we play them.

"We'll do our work. We'll prepare properly.

"We'll get proper preparation for them and make sure that we go after the result.

"There is nothing given in this game because there's a lot to play for both sides."

Irish Independent

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