Saturday 17 March 2018

Keatley using Edinburgh 'shock to the system' as drive for Perpignan double-header

Ian Keatley slotted six penalties to win the match for Munster
Ian Keatley slotted six penalties to win the match for Munster

John Fallon

Munster out-half Ian Keatley said the Heineken Cup loss to Edinburgh was "a shock to the system" and will be used to fire the Reds up for the back-to-back matches against Perpignan.

Munster got their campaign back on track after the 29-23 loss at Murrayfield by defeating Gloucester 26-10, and know that victory at Thomond Park on Sunday is vital if they are to qualify for the quarter-finals.

"Everyone knows in the Heineken Cup that you have to win your home matches, so that is our focus for the first week and then we will take the away match from there, but we are just zoning in on Perpignan now," said Keatley, who was in superb kicking form when landing six penalties from seven attempts to carve out an 18-14 win away to Dragons on Friday night

"The back-to-back matches are always huge in the Heineken Cup. We are on a roll. We beat Leinster and then we played Edinburgh and we lost over there, so we are not going to take things lightly this time. The Heineken Cup is the be-all and end-all for us really.

"We are always trying to raise our standards every week and the Edinburgh game was a major shock to the system.

"It will be used as a reminder not to take things for granted."

The win over Dragons keeps Munster on top of the Pro12 table with eight wins from nine games.

Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that South African Gerhard van den Heever, who was not registered for the Heineken Cup games against Perpignan, broke his arm on his debut against Dragons and will be out of action for some time.

Hooker Mike Sherry is awaiting the results of a scan on his left knee. No 8 James Coughlan is expected to be available for the Perpignan game after seeing a specialist as a precaution after receiving an eye injury at Rodney Parade.

Irish Independent

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