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‘One Step At A Time’ For Penney And Munster

‘One Step At A Time’ For Penney And Munster

Munster’s preparations continued today for their ‘must win’ Heineken Cup encounter with Perpignan at Thomond Park on Sunday afternoon.

Munster had an overnight camp in Limerick and the full squad trained at the University of Limerick today ahead of Friday’s team announcement for the Perpignan game.

The Munster ‘A’ side for the British & Irish Cup game away to Plymouth will be named tomorrow.

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Munster currently lie second in Pool 6 of the Heineken Cup, a point behind Sunday’s opponents and head coach Rob Penney is glad his side still have their fate in their own hands.

“We’re masters of our own destiny, we could have been better so far but it could have been worse and we’re still in the hunt,” said the New Zealander.

“Perpignan, on their day, are a very tough side and they have a massive team but we need to get the points at home. They are dangerous from any broken play situation, they are a great continuity, offloading team.

“They play with a lot of width and they’ve got some exceptional pace and finishing power out in their back-line.

“Our ability to manage the game well and keep the ball away from them is going to be critical.”

Since the province’s opening round loss at the hands of Edinburgh, Penney’s charges have gone on a five-match winning streak – but the Munster boss is refusing to get too carried away.

“At times we’re still not playing that well, but we’re getting results and they’re by no means masking the frailties in our game,” he admitted.

“We’re working hard as a group to try to rectify those (frailties) and be more competent in every area of the game.

“We’re there or thereabouts, we’ve been a bit more tenacious at times this year which has been really pleasing and there’s been a real resolve at times.

“We’re taking it one step at a time, we’re just focusing on our performance on Sunday at Thomond Park and on the back of that hopefully get the result.”

On the injury front, Andrew Conway suffered a blow to his knee in the Cardiff Blues match and has some bruising and swelling. The winger is ruled out of training this week and will be monitored next week.

Penney is pleased with the progress of Donnacha Ryan, but he conceded that the Ireland international will almost certainly miss both Perpignan games.

“He’s making great progress but I think he’s still a couple of weeks away. He hasn’t been to any of our sessions on the grass yet, but with a bit of luck he’ll be there in the next six or seven days.

“It’s highly unlikely (that he will play away to Perpignan). We haven’t closed the door fully on that but it’s highly unlikely.”

Click here to purchase tickets for the Munster v Perpignan round 3 game in Limerick on Sunday (kick-off 12.45pm).