Tuesday 23 January 2018

It could be PRO12 farewell for Paulie

The cards are falling quite nicely for Munster with Treviso next up at Independent Park tomorrow (KO 3.05, Live TG4).

The only problem there is the Italian Job their guests and Zebre are engaged in for qualification to The Champions Cup.

Treviso hold a three-point advantage over their countrymen with no easy target left for them.

Leinster and the Scarlets line rest of their route to Europe. This should ensure a battle for the bonus-point, a losing one of Treviso and a winning one for Munster.

The way Munster dealt with Edinburgh two weeks ago showed they were back to their destructive, clinical best.

The Men from the South have won their last eight matches at Irish Independent Park since The Blues won there in 2013 and have won all 14 previous home ties they have played against Italian opponents in all tournaments.

These Italians have slumped to four straight defeats in the Guinness PRO12 and failed to pick up a league point in that sequence to land in a perilous position with Zebre at their hind quarters.

In addition, Treviso have not been able to take home a win outside of their country since the last round of 2013.

It is a trend unlikely to be closely challenged on this occasion.

Surely, this is the time for the region to get behind Paul O'Connell on what could well be his last lap of the League.

His current contract is set to expire in the summer of 2016. In reality, the World Cup could be his last port of call.

This five weeks could be his farewell to Munster, a last meaningful medal for his personal cabinet.

Everyone should be on that bandwagon.


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