‘We wanted to make a statement for all our fans – this is for them’

A BIG WIN for Munster – a statement as much as a result as they make it two from two in the Rainbow Cup.

Reacting to the win, Munster full-back Mike Haley said: “We are delighted with the win. It’s another big derby for us. We really wanted to get back to Thomond and basically make a statement for all the fans that can’t be here. That one was for the fans at home.

“Whenever we’re at Thomond we want to make a statement that we’re not going to roll over and make anything easy so we were into everything and that’s the way we like it.”

Haley crosses for his try. Source: Bryan Keane/INPHO

Captain, Peter O’Mahony, added: “Rugby’s a physical game, that’s where it starts and stops and if you’re off in that department particularly against teams like Ulster you’re not going to compete so we know there’s a standard there that we have to hit to beat teams of that quality and I thought we were up there tonight.

“We scored six tries tonight which was very pleasing, some of it off the back of our defence which we haven’t got in a while, which is also very pleasing, you know, 38 points is a nice haul.”

For Ulster this was a bad night. They were beaten by 28 points, they had Will Addison red carded.

Their coach, Dan McFarland, said: “Obviously we are disappointed, we didn’t play very well. We lacked intensity in certain parts of the game and when you combine it with the real intensity that Munster showed, it meant we were on the back foot for chunks of the game and it was very difficult to come back from that. We started the second half well, then they got the intercept and that was that.”

At half time he made five changes.

“We needed to change things up. There was nothing individual in that; in the first half the intensity and speed of the work in our defence was not as good as we would expect normally – so we needed to make a few changes. There was not anything personal involved in that (decision); we just needed to change things up and did it a wee bit earlier than normally.

“We have done a lot of travelling this year – it is tiring, fatiguing – we will be up to 20 away games this season and that has been tough. The lads prepared well we had a tough beginning to the week, reviewing the Leicester game.

“You also have to say that Munster came at us; they didn’t have a semi-final in Europe last weekend and as a consequence all their chips were in this basket, they had a good time to think about this game.”

On the subject of Addison’s red card, McFarland said: “I haven’t had a chance to look at all the angles on that and the only question was whether your man’s height dropped significantly late and as a consequence it should have been a yellow.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt that it was a card of some sort. I’ll have to look at it more.”

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