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Dublin: 13 °C Wednesday 3 June, 2020

'Playing against one of the best sides in Europe, you've to give yourself a chance. We didn't today'

It was another disappointing visit to the Aviva Stadium for Munster.

O'Mahony said his side's indiscipline cost them dearly.
O'Mahony said his side's indiscipline cost them dearly.
Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Ryan Bailey reports from the Aviva Stadium

PETER O’MAHONY LAMENTED his side’s indiscipline as Munster slumped to another disappointing Lansdowne Road defeat without ever really threatening to end their hoodoo at this ground.

As well as the damaging losses to Saracens and Scarlets here at the back-end of last season, the southern province have now lost their last three inter-pro meetings with Leinster in the capital.

Rassie Erasmus’ side not only surrendered territory and possession through indiscipline and a loose kicking game but were then unable to repair the damage in the second half despite Keith Earls’ double.

Munster did rally in the closing stages through Earls’ second in the left corner to at least leave Dublin with a losing bonus point to show for their efforts, but O’Mahony said his side never gave themselves a fighting chance.

“It’s always a difficult place to come and play and when you go out and concede eight or nine penalties in the first half, you’re putting yourselves under a huge amount of pressure.

“I don’t know what our final tally [11] was but you’re always going to struggle against a team of that quality. As you can see, we’re trying different things and working hard as we can but you have to give yourself a chance and we didn’t today with our discipline.

“If you keep conceding penalties, we spent a lot of game in our half. Off the top of my head, very little set-piece inside Leinster’s half or 22. There were just two or three opportunities for us and as a I said you had to give yourself a chance and we didn’t do that today.”

Looking ahead to the start of the Champions Cup and an opening weekend trip to Castres, the Munster captain said they are moving in the right direction and the visitors showed glimpses of their progress at various junctures during the 23-17 defeat.

Keith Earls runs in for a try despite the efforts of Adam Byrne Earls continued his prolific try-scoring form. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Earls was the standout performer and the Munster defence was largely resilient in the face of Leinster’s 61% territory, with three second-half penalties from the boot of Johnny Sexton ultimately proving the difference on the scoreboard.

“We’re playing against one of the best sides in Europe and you’ve got to give yourself a shot, take your chances and we didn’t today,” O’Mahony continued.

“Discipline is a hugely important thing when you go away to France and we saw from today if we don’t get that right next week we’re going to be in trouble. There’s a good lesson for us.

“There was talk this week that this game isn’t as big as it was but you certainly saw today the intensity, the skill-levels and how hard people were trying — it’s far from a training match.

“We got a lesson in a few things today but rugby is about taking your learnings. The main thing is to take them, move on and build on them. We’re certainly going in the right direction, as you saw today we’re trying new things and trying to expand on them. It takes time but we have to give ourselves more of a chance.

“You’ve got to pick yourself up. There’s big games followed by big games and you’ve to dust yourself down and have a big training week. Back in Europe next week, everyone loves playing in Europe.”

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Ryan Bailey

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