Saturday 21 April 2018

'We are still masters of our own destiny' – Penney

Munster coach Rob Penney says his side must learn lessons from their defeat to Glasgow and quickly move on. Photo: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
Munster coach Rob Penney says his side must learn lessons from their defeat to Glasgow and quickly move on. Photo: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

John Fallon

Munster coach Rob Penney has warned his men not to look beyond tomorrow's testing encounter at the Sportsground in Galway when victory over Connacht is required to get their bid for RaboDirect Pro12 glory back on track.

The surprise 22-5 loss to Glasgow has left Munster with a lot of work to do if they are to secure a home semi-final, having led the league table for most of the season.

The value of a home semi-final is quite clear – in the eight games which have taken place over the last four years since the system was introduced, the away team has never won the semi-final.

Glasgow's victory last week was just the latest instalment by the Scots in thwarting Munster. A year ago, they dished out a drubbing before Munster went to London and defeated Harlequins in the Heineken Cup semi-final.

And Munster supporters with good memories will also recall the Glaswegians turning them over a week before Munster lifted the Heineken Cup for the second time in 2008.

But coach Penney wants his men not looking back or to next week's Heineken Cup semi-final against Toulon, and instead wants them focused on the challenge posed by Connacht tomorrow.

He said they need to heed the lessons from the Glasgow game and move on, approach the Connacht match in the right frame of mind and then turn their attention to Marseille next week and the showdown with Toulon.

"We knew we weren't quite right against Glasgow but we can't dwell on it, we move on and take our learnings out of the game.

"It was a great time to get those learnings, it is just unfortunate we have to go through this to get them, but that's just the reality of sport.

"We know what we need to do over the next five or six weeks if we're in it that long and we've got a window of opportunity and we are still masters of our own destiny, so to speak," said Penney.

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