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Dublin: 2°C Saturday 26 September 2020
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'It won't be good enough next week' - Munster ready to rise to Leinster challenge

Provincial heavyweights move on from sluggish shows as they prepare to meet again this weekend.

Image: Billy Stickland/INPHO

WITH TREVISO DISPATCHED, it didn’t take long for Munster’s thoughts to turn to Leinster.

The driving rain in Thomond Park on Saturday night didn’t exactly make for a thrilling spectacle and much like his players, Rob Penney seemed happy enough to draw a line under a workmanlike performance and a 14-3 win.

“In terms of preparation, it was what it was,” Penney said after a try in either half from the fit-again Keith Earls and James Downey.

It could have been a banana skin, it wasn’t, and we’re going to move on pretty quickly.

Much like the rotated Leinster XV that ground out a win against Zebre the night before, Penney expects to see plenty of personnel changes when the provincial heavyweights meet in the Aviva Stadium this weekend.

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell may have been back on training ground on Tuesday but his only involvement on Saturday night was to join Tommy O’Donnell and Conor Murray in showcasing their Six Nations silverware to the home fans.

Paul O'Connell Tommy O'Donnell and Conor Murray with the RBS 6 Nations trophy Source: Billy Stickland/INPHO

In their absence Felix Jones was the standout performer with the full-back named man of the match for his composure under the high ball.

Typically Jones sought to downplay his own contribution, but while he praised his team-mates, he knows that they will have to show a vast improvement on Saturday.

“On a night like tonight, I think it’s entirely about the team performance. There’s going to be a lot of balls down, as there were, and a lot of errors.

It wasn’t the most polished performance but we pulled together but we got the win.We’re probably a bit off where we want to be and obviously what was good enough this week won’t be good enough next week. We’re aware of that.

“Hopefully the weather will be improved next week and we can play a bit more rugby.

“I think anyone who has ever been to a Munster-Leinster game knows what it’s about.

“You don’t really have to talk about that fixture – it is what it is, everyone knows what it’s about, both teams just going hammer and tongs for 80 minutes.”

The scene is set for the coming week.

– Reporting by Aoife Danagher.

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