Monday 18 December 2017

Malone wary of Stirling as Munster home in on last eight

Munster head coach Peter Malone
Munster head coach Peter Malone

BRITISH & IRISH CUP: A win in Stirling this afternoon (3.0) would guarantee Munster 'A' a place in the quarter-finals, either as group winners or as one of the best second-placed sides -- depending on the result in Plymouth.

Munster 'A' sit second in Pool 4 behind leaders Plymouth Albion -- who play Nottingham this afternoon -- on points difference.

"Our understanding is that, if we win the game we go through as a second-placed loser no matter what happens with Plymouth," said head coach Peter Malone.

Fresh from their late bonus-point win over Nottingham last weekend, Malone has again named a strong starting XV.

Cian Bohane replaces the injured Ivan Dineen at outside-centre, while CJ Stander starts at No 8. Billy Holland returns from illness and Niall Scannell starts at hooker.

Despite Stirling's poor campaign, Malone is taking nothing for granted in Scotland.

"It'll be difficult enough for the lads to beat Stirling, even though they've lost all their games. It's their last game at home and there will be a bit of pride on the line."

Munster 'A' have more than enough quality to pick up the bonus point that would put them in with a good shout of claiming a home quarter-final.

Verdict: Munster 'A'

Stirling County -- B Addison; G Lindsay, D Gilmour, B Archibald, R Hughes; S Edwards, S Kennedy; J Bhatti, A Moffat, G Mountford; C Deacons, P Parker; D Basilia, S McDonald, J Swanson. Reps: R Kennedy, K Burney, C Hutton, E Dewar, W Bordill, AJ McFarlane, F Lyle.

Munster 'A' -- R O'Mahony; D Sweetnam, C Bohane, D Hurley, G van den Heever; J Holland, G Hurley; A Cotter, N Scannell, J Ryan; I Nagle, B Holland; Dave O'Callaghan, B O'Mahony (capt), CJ Stander. Reps: G Slattery, N Horan, D O'Shea, S Buckley, B Haugh, R Scannell, N Kenneally, D Goggin.

Irish Independent

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