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Waterlogged Stradey Drowns Munster’s Preparations.

26th March 2006 By Munster Rugby

Waterlogged Stradey Drowns Munster’s Preparations.

Besides the affect on League standings, the postponement of this Celtic League game seriously hindered Munster’s preparations for the upcoming Heineken Cup clash with Perpignan.

Besides the affect on League standings, the postponement of this Celtic League game seriously hindered Munster’s preparations for the upcoming Heineken Cup clash with Perpignan.

With that game just a week away Munster could have badly done with the outing. Instead they had to settle for a training session on a school groun near Stradey Park.

They had arrived in a wet Cardiff Airport on Friday evening and later on watched Cariff Blues and Glasgow Warriors battle it out in horrendous condidtions at the Arms Park.

Munster awoke at the Stradey Park Hotel to a bright dry Saturday morning and the rain that started to fall at around 11.30 seemed of no no great consequence.

However by the time the squad arrived at Stradey Park at 4.10, the Fire Service were already in position attempting to suck water from the pitch. The main area of concern was along the touchline on the Main Stand side with a large pool of water from the 22 to to in in-goal area.

A tractor pulling a spiker/roller machine was galloping up and down the pitch while groundsmen were ‘forking’ the worst affected areas.

When match referee Rob Dickson arrived, he decided to delay a decision until 5pm – a half hour before the scheduled kick-off. As it turned out once the rain – which had abated for a short spell – started to pour down again, Dickson declared the pitch unplayable before the 5pm deadline and the game was cancelled.

Munster took themselves off to a nearby school grounds for an hour long training session, the Scarlets did likewise, returning to Stradey to shower and change, eat a hasty and tasty meal and leave for Cardiff Airport and their chartered Aer Arann flight.

The squad landed in Cork Airport at about 11pm.

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