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Glasgow defeat 'probably Munster's worst performance in the last 40 games', says Rassie

“You don’t rectify that in meeting rooms or in training sessions. You rectify that on Saturday.”

'Poor performance': Munster lost to Glasgow last time out.
'Poor performance': Munster lost to Glasgow last time out.
Image: Craig Watson/INPHO

RASSIE ERASMUS WANTS his side to park their frustrations at losing to Glasgow and take it out on Cardiff Blues this weekend.

But with Jean Kleyn the latest second row to join the injured list, the coach is hoping for some good news and an immediate impact from his leading stars.

Captain Peter O’Mahony, CJ Stander and Conor Murray have already been pencilled in for this Saturday’s Thomond Park clash, while JJ Hanrahan is set for a second Munster debut two years after he left to join Northampton.

But with Kleyn due to see a specialist today due to a neck injury, Erasmus has his fingers crossed ahead of a couple of key Pro14 games with Cardiff and Leinster, and their Champions Cup opener against Castres on Sunday fortnight.

“Jean has got a bang to the neck again. He is going to see the specialist tomorrow. I don’t think he will be available this weekend definitely,” said Erasmus, who suspects it is a different neck injury to the one that ruled Kleyn out for four months earlier this year.

“No, it’s not at all that serious. It might be a game or two. A guy like JK, especially with Darren O’Shea and Gerbrant Groebler out, and there is a few guys injured… Dave O’Callaghan’s out, the second row, there seems to be bad luck there.

“It’s one of those things but, listen, we’ve got Robin Copeland who can play second row and Sean O’Connor (neck) shouldn’t be out for a long time and hopefully a guy like Jean Kleyn is next week back into the mix.”

The signing of former Leinster underage player Mark Flanagan from Saracens on a three-month deal is indeed timely, and the big lock trained with the team for the first time yesterday, and he could yet be pitched into action as soon as Saturday.

Tasting defeat for the first time this season saw Munster slip from top place in Conference A to second, but they will hope to shake off the sub-par display in most facets of the game in time to beat Blues, who left Connacht with victory last time out.

According to Erasmus, who is due to return home as Director of Rugby to the Springboks in the coming months, the only part of last weekend’s game he was satisfied with was their scrummaging, and he says he is expecting a big reaction next time out.

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“Look it was probably our worst performance in the last 40 games. We work together, and it shouldn’t be any excuses or looking for any excuses it was just a really disappointing performance from the players and obviously us as coaches during last week. To pitch up in a game like that wasn’t a good week.

“The previous six times when we lost in the last year and a half we did the same things when we lost. Whenever we have lost a game in the last 14 or 15 months, we have to bounce back.

“We can’t get all emotional, we are disappointed and it was a poor performance. We only can rectify that on Saturday, you don’t rectify that in meeting rooms or in training sessions. You rectify that on Saturday.”

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Declan Rooney

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