Duncan Williams on learning from last season and Munster’s upcoming Pro 14 tie with Ospreys.
Experienced scrum half Duncan Williams has claimed 5 try assists in Munster’s first two Guinness Pro14 encounters this season, in the absence Irish International Conor Murray, who has been given an extended rest period following his involvement with the Lions over the summer.
Williams has served as a reliable replacement for Murray over the years and had to be called upon for the province’s most important game of last season, the Champions Cup semi-final against Saracens. It was a game that Munster fans would rather forget.
The game didn’t go to plan against a strong Saracens side who Munster could not break down and who killed the game with ruthless efficiency. The Cork Constitution clubman says that Munster must learn from their mistakes in that game, as well as from the Pro12 final loss to the Scarlets.
“You have to learn from your mistakes so to totally forget about the semi-final (Champions Cup) the final (Pro 12) would be foolish of us. Look, it’s always in the back of your head I’ve watched those games numerous times and looked at what could have been done differently. It’s a new season, we won a lot of games last season and we’re looking to build on that.”
Williams says that his side may have benefitted from a quicker attacking game in the semi-final clash. “It was difficult, especially against Saracens in the semi-final. Their defence is pretty awesome, it’s one of the best around. There were one or two opportunities where we could have attacked a bit more out wide earlier, where as we took a phase or two extra.
While, the 31-year-old believes that the loss to Scarlets was something that happens in sport sometimes, when your side have an off-day.
“That was one of those days when you’re sitting there looking and the harder you try the more things go wrong. We weren’t a bad team overnight, we only lost 4 or 5 games last year so you don’t throw the toys out of the pram and change everything, you just keep going the way you are.”
This weekend Munster face into their first away day of the season as they travel to Wales to take on the Ospreys who currently lie in 4th place in group A following last week’s loss to Glasgow. The 31-10 loss came away from home but Williams is expecting a sterner test at the Liberty Stadium.
“They’re a formidable team at home it’s always a tough place to go. It’s always a good, entertaining and tough game over at the Ospreys it always goes the full 80 minutes. They’re a very good attacking team, they can hurt you from everywhere.
Munster’s last loss to Ospreys came in Cork in February 2016, as the province fell to their first defeat in 13 games, having won the previous 12.
Ospreys v Munster kicks off at 3.15pm on September 16th at Liberty Stadium.
The game will be televised live on Sky Sports and TG4.