Munster Take B&I Cup Challenge To Nottingham
14th January 2011 By Munster Rugby
A little like their colleagues bound for Toulon, the British & Irish Cup squad have no room for error in tonights clash with Nottingham at Meadow Lane.
Defeat will almost certainly mean the end of the road as far as qualification for the knock-out stages is concerned thanks to that surprise opening day defeat by Llanelli in Waterford.
Munster's chances will not have been helped by their inactivity. They haven't played a game since the 11th December visit to Melrose but quite a few have had some Magners League activity.
The experience of Denis Hurley, Barry Murphy, Scott Deasy, Tommy O'Donnell and skipper Billy Holland will be invaluable as they face a side that includes All Black Ali Williams, US Eagle Junior Sifa who spent two years with Midleton and England Sevens player Luke Sheriff. Add in the likes of former Dragons/Blues fly-half James Arlidge and Tim Streather recently arrived from Worcester and one gets an idea of the size of the task Munster face.
Nottingham are out of contention in the English league but very much in the hunt for a place in the British & Irish Cup quarter finals and they will see tonight's game as crucial to that end.
Munster: Denis Hurley; Danny Barnes, Tom Gleeson, Ivan Dineen, Barry Murphy; Scott Deasy, Conor Murray; Dave Kilcoyne, Sean Henry, Stephen Archer; Ian Nagle, Dave Foley; Billy Holland (c), Tommy O'Donnell, Paddy Butler. Replacements: Duncan Casey, Peter Borlase, Dave O'Callaghan, Kieran Essex, Duncan Williams, Declan Cusack, Simon Zebo.
Nottingham: D Jackson; A Savage, A Forsyth, J Sifa, T Streather; T Usasz, J Arlidge; J Harris, J Stephens, M Halsall; I Kench, A Williams; C Hammond, L Sherriff, S Kalamafoni. Replacements: B Buxton, T Youngs, A Shaw, P Eggleshaw, F Barnham, Hamilton, D Marshall.