Sunday 24 February 2019

Sexton: We owe Scarlets one back

Johnny Sexton. Photo: Sportsfile
Johnny Sexton. Photo: Sportsfile

Jonathan Sexton is straining at the leash to get to The Scarlets in The Champions Cup semi-final on Saturday week.

"It is the biggest game of our season. We're going to want to get one back on them for last year," said Sexton, at the launch of his Official Leinster Supporters Club Legends T-shirt.

There is definitely a sense of unfinished business from the Welsh club surviving going down to 14 men early on to knock Leinster out in the PRO14 League semi-final at The RDS last season.

"I don't think we could have played any worse here," said the Ireland out-half.

"But, they are a good side and we have to give them a lot of respect because they've done a lot this year and won the League last year," he added.

It remains to be seen how improved Leinster are 12 months on.

In many ways, The Scarlets are the litmus test because it was the PRO14 champions which ended their season.

This will not be treated as any other game given how the history of Leinster's evolution is so woven into the history of the competition.

"It's huge. The build up to any European game is a different feel to it straight away on a Monday," added Sexton.

"The guys coming in looking different, feeling different."

Meanwhile, Munster have moved to shore up their shortcomings in midfield by signing South African centre Dries Swanepoel to a short-term contract.

The long-term injuries to Chris Farrell and Jaco Taute have left them looking light on experience, despite the solid form of Rory Scannell and Sam Arnold.

Ulster have lost their tight-head prop Wiehahn Herbst for the rest of the season with a knee injury in what their coach Jono Gibbes described as "a big blow".

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