Friday 9 December 2016

Munster hunting for home semi-final

It is in the nature of Paul O'Connell to brood and bristle over what should-have been done right as a reminder of what has to be done against The Dragons at Irish Independent tomorrow (KO 3.0, Live TG4).

The sight of Paul Marshall wheeling around the outside of Munster's defence for 14-man Ulster to snatch a draw at The Kingspan must have gnawed away at him.

It leaves Munster standing in third, on the same number of points (70) as leaders The Ospreys and second-placed Glasgow and one ahead of Ulster.

At the moment, they are looking at an away semi-final in Glasgow where they fell one point short in last year's semi-final.

"Every game is winnable. It is just more difficult away from home," said O'Connell.

"It is just a shame we let those two points drop and let it out of our own control. It was a big opportunity lost," he reflected.

"If we had seen out the game, we'd have a crack at a home semi-final that would be in our control.

"Unfortunately, now we are relying on favours from other people."

In truth, the two points Munster took home from Ravenhill could make all the difference at the end of the regular season.

They will surely fancy their chances of five points against The Dragons, while Glasgow and Ulster go head-to-head in Scotland.

"We've a big ask ourselves to try and beat The Dragons and get a bonus-point as well which will be very difficult."

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