This weekend sees the biggest clash so far in the Magners League, but first lets take a look at last weeks results.
The all-Ireland clash between Ulster and Connacht saw men from the north win convincingly 30-6. Ulster gained a 4-try bonus point victory at the Galway Sportsground to go 4th in the table. The only silver lining for bottom of the table Connacht at the moment is that Fionn Carr is the top try scorer in the league with three.
Leinster had a much tighter affair against Edinburgh, winning 21-19. One of the most reliable place kickers in the world, Chris Paterson, missed an injury time penalty that would have won the game. Edinburgh were the only side with a 100% win record going into the weekend, but still remained top of the table following the loss.
Munster had a more convincing win against Dragons on Sunday. The first half was a low scoring affair, tied at 3-3 at the break. But the second half saw an explosion of tries from back row Nick Williams, who scored three with Doug Howlett getting a fourth. Nick Williams is a player who has never impressed and has suffered from several injuries, so its good to see him making some sort of a return on the no-doubt massive bucks being paid to him.
Tomorrow night sees Scarlets arriving in Ulster, and I will back the Irish team to win, being at home and coming off the back of a win. The match is on Setanta and kick off is 7:05 PM. Connacht take on Scarlets on Saturday at 4:30 PM, which should be a close game given the not-so-great form of both teams. Scarlets to win though.
Then comes the big clash. After Leinster took the victory in last years Heineken Cup semi-final, Munster will be looking for some sweet revenge in the RDS this Saturday. They have named their strongest squad this year, which includes the return of Ronan O’Gara and Paul O’Connell. The squad also includes the return of Paul Warwick, who I think was under-rated last season and is a great addition for the biggest match of the new season.
Leinster have equally named a strong squad for the clash. Brian O’Driscoll returns to the fray, in a squad that includes 13 internationals. The match promises to be a cracker, and is on Setanta Sports 1 with coverage at 5:30 PM and kick off at 6:30 PM.