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Dublin: 9°C Wednesday 12 May 2021

'We’ve got a lot of bumps and bruises': Van Graan disappointed following Murrayfield loss

Munster succumbed to a six point defeat in Edinburgh on Friday night in the Pro14.

Munster head coach Johann van Graan.
Munster head coach Johann van Graan.
Image: Stephen McCarthy

JOHANN VAN GRAAN admitted that his men had suffered a punishing defeat in every sense after a hard fought Pro14 encounter at BT Murrayfield resulted in a 12-6 victory for Edinburgh.

Munster’s head coach had twice seen his side take the lead, only to succumb in the end to the second of Duhan van der Merwe’s tries, registered when the home team was undermanned after his fellow winger Jason Harries was sent to the sin bin.

“This was a very tough game, very physical, we’ve got a lot of bumps and bruises. They took their opportunities better than we took ours,” said van Graan.

He felt his side had made it difficult for themselves by starting both halves slowly, inviting their hosts to take the initiative.

“I wasn’t happy with the way we started each half, putting ourselves under pressure, but we defended the line and got out of it and got in front and then they scored that try out wide,” he observed.

Darren O’Shea and Jack O’Donoghue dejected after the game Darren O’Shea and Jack O’Donoghue dejected after the game. Source: Gary Carr/INPHO

“We then got ourselves back in the game two yards from their try-line, but again our execution let us down.”

Edinburgh’s first try was a stylish long-range effort, created by Dougie Fife’s elusive running and well finished by van der Merwe, but he paid particular tribute to the way they had responded to the sin-binning, producing the most creative spell of sustained play by either side during that period.

“It’s strange in rugby, sometimes it works that way to revitalise a team. They kept the ball well so well done to them,” he said.

His side remains well placed in Conference B, but with a European Champions Cup quarter-final looming, he is not yet ready to turn his attention to the play-offs.
“The play-offs are still a long way away,” said van Graan.

“For us it’s game by game. We knew this was going to be a tough one, we were ready for it, it’s two teams that have a go at each other. They came out with a win at home and now it’s recovery for the next two days and back to the job on Monday.”

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