Saturday 15 December 2018

Exciting derby clash in B&I Cup

Munster A coach Pete Malone. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile
Munster A coach Pete Malone. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

Daragh Small

Reigning champions Munster A make the trip to Donnybrook for their clash with Leinster A in a huge B&I Cup quarter-final today (3.0).

Munster A won the competition with a brilliant 29-28 win over Jersey Reds in the final at Irish Independent Park last April.

Pete Malone's side have been in good form this term again and secured second place in Pool 1.

They won five of their six pool games with their only defeat coming against Bedford Blues in a very positive competition to date.

That 25-14 defeat came at Irish Independent Park on December 8 and put Munster A on the back foot in the pool.

But they composed themselves and secured a crucial win over Bedford in the return fixture at Goldington Road.

But their loss before Christmas means they must face a very impressive Leinster A side who topped Pool 2, which consisted Doncaster Knights and Pat Lam's Bristol.

Leinster A also won five of their six games and will be Munster's toughest test so far this season.

Leinster A won this competition two years in a row between 2013 and 2014 and will be determined to reclaim their crown.

Munster A won the B&I Cup in 2012 when they beat Cross Keys, 31-12 in the decider also in Cork.

But last season was a breakthrough campaign for this Munster A side, and their final comeback victory was a huge success for that team, and injuries to the senior squad will bring some uncertainty this week.

Munster A were 18-0 down at one stage against Jersey Reds and that type of experience could be vital in the bigger games this season.

This game will be another big ask.

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