Monday 21 January 2019

Rugby fans facing tough Champions Cup TV choice as crucial Leinster and Munster matches go head-to-head

Johnny Sexton (left) and Peter O'Mahony (right).
Johnny Sexton (left) and Peter O'Mahony (right).
Will Slattery

Will Slattery

There's a very tough choice on the horizon for a lot of Irish rugby fans next weekend, with Leinster and Munster scheduled to kick off in crucial Champions Cup games at the exact same time.

While ardent supporters of both provinces are sure to opt for their own team, there are huge sections of the Irish rugby public who each week like to watch both sides in action - as well as taking in Connacht and Ulster if their schedule allows it.

However, despite being two of the most passionately supported teams in the tournament, the Champions Cup fixture-makers have put Leinster and Munster side-by-side with 17.30 kick-off times this Saturday evening.

The reigning champions host Bath in their annual Christmas game at the Aviva Stadium, while Munster travel to France for a tricky clash with Top 14 title holders Castres.

There are obviously ways for intrepid viewers to watch two matches at the one time, but it is unfortunate that the fixture clash has come about in a tournament that is held in special regard by Irish rugby fans.

As it happens, the last time Leinster and Munster kicked off at the same time in the European Cup was a pretty special day... albeit the two sides were facing each other in a blockbuster semi-final at Croke Park in 2009.

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