Wednesday 20 February 2019

Thomond set to play big part in key tussle

The omens are positive for Munster as they seek the win they need against Exeter Chiefs tomorrow, with victory in 11 straight Round 6 games going their way in the Champions Cup. (Stock picture)
The omens are positive for Munster as they seek the win they need against Exeter Chiefs tomorrow, with victory in 11 straight Round 6 games going their way in the Champions Cup. (Stock picture)

Dave Murphy

The omens are positive for Munster as they seek the win they need against Exeter Chiefs tomorrow, with victory in 11 straight Round 6 games going their way in the Champions Cup.

The last time Munster lost their final pool game came back in the 2006-'07 season when Leicester Tigers defeated Declan Kidney's side 13-6 at Thomond Park.

While that loss to Leicester Tigers was Munster's first European loss on home soil, they have since lost four more games at Thomond Park in the competition. In 2011 and 2012, they fell to shock losses to Harlequins and Ulster in the knockout stages, while in round three of the 2014 and 2015 competitions, they slipped up against Clermont and Leicester respectively.

Currently, Munster's winning run at Thomond Park in the Champions Cup stands at 11 games, while their last defeat in any competition at the venue was more than a year ago when Leinster claimed victory in the St Stephen's Day clash in 2017.

"I think (the hunger to win) comes from deep within," said coach Johann van Graan. "If you walk into Thomond Park, I don't know what it is but you walk through that tunnel and see 'Pride' in front of your face and you drive on the bus and you see people and what this team means to the people. I think it comes from that."

Irish Independent

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