Pienaar expecting a 'tough' Munster test
Ruan Pienaar has warned his Ulster team-mates that a fully-charged Munster side will arrive in Belfast tomorrow evening desperate to bring the same kind of passion that they showed against Glasgow last weekend, WRITES CIAN TRACEY.
Ulster are aiming to consolidate their place at the top of the PRO12 but Pienaar has been impressed with Munster under his compatriot Rassie Erasmus' guidance.
Munster were beaten by Leinster in their last league outing, while Ulster are eager to recover from a similar inter-pro defeat to Connacht.
"It doesn't get any easier, it's always a tough game against Munster," Pienaar said.
"It has been a hard two weeks for them with the passing of Anthony (Foley) and all the emotions that came with that.
"It certainly has spurred them on to perform well for him. They look a good team now, and with our recent record against them not too good, it's certainly a nice challenge for us.
"They haven't changed that much. They still do the basics extremely well, have a great pack of forwards and an excellent backline. We've looked at them, and analysed them, and they have a lot of strength - and, like all Munster sides, they're passionate.
"We're looking for consistency. We're creating a lot, but just not finishing off those chances. But we are feeling good after last Friday's win."
Ulster will desperately miss Pienaar when he leaves the province at the end of the season but, while he is still in the team, he remains one of Les Kiss' most important players.
The 32-year old, however, is happy to continue to shoulder the extra responsibility as Ulster look to end their trophyless run.
"It's the same for me every week, I just try and enjoy my rugby and perform the best that I possibly can, and where I can help the team," Pienaar added.
"I think everyone in the team knows what to expect. Indeed, everyone knows in the team what Les expects and that is putting those performances in and just being that little bit more accurate to enable us to convert chances into points. But I do think we are in a good place at the moment."