Sunday 9 December 2018

Irish provinces in the hunt for Euro honours

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Stock picture

Ronan Loughney

Coming into the final week of the two European competitions all four provinces sit top of their pools with their respective fates largely in their hands.

Leinster are the best Irish prospect for winning a competition. Whether it was beating a tough Exeter team away from home or mauling a weakened Glasgow, they have been clinical. With a home quarter-final already secured they will be heading over to Montpellier full of confidence.

Despite a slow start in their game against Racing 92, Munster rallied and were unlucky not to edge a result away from home.

Sitting top of their pool they will be relishing their final pool game against a strong Castres side in Thomond Park. A bonus-point win would put them in a strong position but they may still need other results to go their way to secure a home quarter-final.

Ulster are in a tighter spot and will be eyeing the La Rochelle and Harlequins game closely. They know a win against Wasps will see them advance, albeit their final position will be decided by the other results.

Connacht's fight back to secure a draw after a poor start against Worcester will mean they come to the game against Oyonnax at the Sportsground knowing a win will secure a home quarter-final, and a bonus point win potentially a home semi-final.

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