After the French, come the English: Ireland awaits

Last Heineken Round 2 had four Franco-Irish matchups.   It finished with two wins for Leinster and Ulster, a loss for Connacht and a pesky draw for Munster.

Now we get two rounds of Anglo-Irish encounters with the Christmas back-to-backs:

Leinster v Northampton

Munster v Saracens

Ulster v Quins

Connacht v Gloucester

Saints host the boys in blue in a league-leader match-up.   Although most of these games have gone the way of Leinster in previous seasons, this one could be a lot more interesting.   Leinster haven’t had their full team out much this season, and a lot of the so-called ‘second-stringers’ have been pushing for a start – notably young Rónan Kelleher, the 20-ear old academy grad hooker.   Six tries to his name, ahead of his speedy brother Cian who got a double last weekend.  Still you’d expect Cullen to name mostly an experienced side and look to experiment at home the following week.

Munster have added in extra seating to Thomond Park for their game against Saracens.   They are licking their lips to have another go at the Champions for the third season in a row.

Connacht have played a blinder with 14 injuries and Andy Friend trusting the young fellas to do a job.   They performed well against Toulouse in France, and deserved their opening win at home against Montpelier.

Ulster, meanwhile, are sitting in the unusual position of having won both their opening matches, and will have the welcome flegs ready for Quins at Ravenhill.  They’ll be confident.  Hopefully not too confident.

Who’s feeling confident?  Who’s worrying and who doesn’t give a shit cos their team is not involved?



Author: PotHale

Bloke. Ireland. Rugby. Drink. Talk. Work. Sleep. Photography. Technology. Vision Impaired. Aneurysms. Separation. Loneliness. Epiphanies. Chilled. What’s next.