Thursday 18 January 2018

Shock Treviso defeat hard to stomach

Denis Leamy

I don't think I ever recall a team having four yellow cards in a game before, so it is hard to figure out what happened in Treviso last weekend.

Munster looked good to not only win but also to pick up a third successive five-pointer; yet they left Treviso without even a point. That will have been hard to stomach.

Treviso are improving but you would have expected Munster to come away from the two matches in Italy with at least nine points.

It seemed to be going that way, Zebre were put to the sword and then there was the benefit of having a week together in Italy to prepare.

You would have expected that a second win in Italy would be picked up given that the likes of Simon Zebo, Donnacha Ryan and Peter O'Mahony (right) were available, so it was a big disappointment with the way that game turned out.

The loss puts a fair bit of pressure on Munster this weekend and the fact that the Dragons have shown a big improvement this season cranks it up a bit as well.

But that's good, and I think you will see a big response from Munster. Next week they will play Leinster and then it is Heineken Cup action the following week. A good test this weekend is just what's needed.

Lyn Jones was probably the guy who did most to get the Ospreys up and running and he seems to be doing a great job with the Dragons.

I always found them hard to beat, especially over there.

They have a good support base around Newport and while this game is in Musgrave Park, the Welsh will come over with a fair bit of confidence.

There seems to be something stirring with the Dragons, but I expect Munster to bounce back this weekend.

Irish Independent

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