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What Was Said Afterwards

6th April 2008 By Munster Rugby

What Was Said Afterwards

The superlatives are exhausted now and worthless in any case. Evenings like this have defined Munster more than words can say, said Denis Walsh writing in the Sunday Times.

And according to the Gloucester Website, “Gloucester were cut off at the knees by a team red raw in defensive effort and the art of supreme organisation. Munster have also added a midfield threat worthy of the name and when you combine the talismanic efforts of Donncha O’Callaghan, Paul O’Connell and the brilliant Alan Quinlan alongside Rua Tipoki and Lifeimi Mafi, their all-round qualities were obvious.

They are probably a better team now than the one that Gloucester defeated in 2002 but that is not to say Gloucester didn’t give it a damn good go and anyone who failed to see that is either from Limerick or cannot see the obvious.

But Munster’s brilliance is in their ability to work so hard without the ball as they do with it and it is unlikely that anyone but a Wasps or a Leicester at the peak of their powers would have been good enough to get ahead and stay there.” 

“Munster survived long periods on scraps but when their opportunities came, they grabbed them with clinical efficiency – one for Dowling and one for Howlett. The nature of those tries was clear evidence that Munster can play rugby as well as live off their wits. – The Sunday Times.

“Munster march on, controlled, imperious, irresistible. They were stretched but never at full stretch because their phenomenal reserves of experience always kept them one step ahead of Gloucester. It was a tough examination for Gloucester who never gave up, but who also never knew quite what to do to get the better of Munster. There is no shame in that. Better sides than Gloucester have had similar difficulties and they will be all the better for the beating.” – Paul Ackford, The Sunday Telegraph.

“It was a bigger win than the scoreline suggests. When you get to the business end of the competition you want businessmen used to closing big deals. They don’t come any more clinical than Munster. This was their 10th European Cup quarter-final, and now they are headed for their seventh semi-final. Raise the stakes — like taking them to a ground where on their only two previous visits they were hammered — and they stay calm when the heat increases. – Brendan Fanning, The Sunday Independent.

“Another one for the pantheon of memorable wins by the marvels of Munster, and this one ranks right up there with the various days when they’ve toppled French aristocrats and English kingpins in their own back gardens. As had to be the case, Munster were obliged to cling on a tad desperately at times and very often were stretched to breaking point. But, as is also the way with their on-the-road epics, they never broke.” – Gerry Thornley, The Irish Times.




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