Sport Munster Rugby

Monday 26 February 2018

Foley wary of Dragons' firepower

Munster head coach Anthony Foley
Munster head coach Anthony Foley

John Fallon

Munster return to one of their happier hunting grounds as they look for a boost ahead of their key Champions Cup encounters with Leicester Tigers.

Victory in their last two visits to Newport have resulted in a 50pc win rate at Rodney Parade with both sides winning six league games each at the venue.

Munster, though, hold the edge over the Dragons in the league with a dozen wins from 13 home clashes resulting in a overall return of 17 wins for the Reds to seven for the Gwent side.

There has never been a draw between these two sides in the league.

Munster won 38-12 there last season but it was much closer the year before that when it finished 18-14.

Coach Anthony Foley said that while they have a decent record at the venue, Munster have never had anything easy there and he does not expect it to be any different on Sunday.

"We know it's going to be difficult. It's going to be attritional, it's going to take a lot of us to go there and win but I think is important after last Saturday that we go about doing that and people see that and hopefully the players that are out there will give and account of themselves that's worthy of the jersey.

"Last year I went through their Academy and the Welsh Academy and eight of them were in the Dragons," said Foley.

Munster will be looking to bounce back from their home loss to Connacht and while Dragons have won only two league games so far this season, Foley believes they are much stronger than those results would suggest.

"They have a lot of quality in the side, they were in the semi-final of the Challenge Cup last year.

"I know they are down near the bottom of the table but they were only a couple of scores away from winning those games. We understand that, we obviously watch a lot of their games and we understand there are massive threats in their game and we need to be wary of that but we need to go about our job better than we went about it last Saturday."

The Dragons went down 19-12 to Ulster in their last home match, which ended a five-match winning run at Rodney Parade.

Their 30-24 win there in April 2013 was their only win over Munster in their last nine meetings.

Irish Independent

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