Leamy and Kleyn “in good spirits” as Munster look to end trophy drought against the Stormers

Rowntree’s side have arrived in Cape Town ahead of the clash, and Leamy has reported that all is well in the camp following the near 14,00km journey.

Munster have travelled to Cape Town, South Africa, as they bid to win the United Rugby Championship for the first time, facing defending champions The Stormers in the Grand Final this Saturday at 5:30pm. 

Graham Rowntree’s side come into the game off the back of successive wins over Glasgow and Leinster in the knockout stages and are unbeaten since April 1st. 

However, they will face one of the best teams in the world, and defending champions Stormers. The South African outfit have won their last three games, with their previous loss coming against Munster just over a month ago. Rowntree’s men defeated The Stormers on a scoreline of 26-24, and will be hoping for a similar result this time out. 

Munster lock Jean Kleyn has arguably been the club’s player of the season this year. The 29 year old has been outstanding all season, becoming an ever present in the starting XV. After a shaky start to the season, Munster have responded in style under their new coach and Kleyn feels they are now reaping the rewards.

“We’ve been speaking about belief since the start of the season. It’s one of the big things Graham was always beating down into us, always emphasising, just belief. That’s something we’ve developed over the course of the season.

“At the start of the season we were talking about belief in the process, and obviously five out of the first seven rounds is not really great but we kept belief in the process. We didn’t try reinvent the wheel after things didn’t go well, we stuck to what our coaching staff were coaching. The belief in that got to the point where we started to win games.”

2 October 2021; Munster players celebrate after Jack O’Donoghue of Munster, hidden, goes over to score their fourth try during the United Rugby Championship match between Munster and DHL Stormers at Thomond Park in Limerick. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

The Stormers have been unbeaten since they lost to their final opponents just over a month ago, and Munster players and staff are well aware of the threats the South Africans will bring. A strong, powerful, athletic side, Munster will have to be at their best if they are to take home the cup this Saturday. 

Coach Denis Leamy believes The Red Army can win but the game will be “a huge challenge.” (6)

“Obviously they are a really really good side. We had a good performance against Glasgow, another good performance against Leinster. A lot of it is about getting our own stuff right, and how we are going to do our jobs and do them well and implement the plan that we want to put in place. Look, a team like The Stormers, they’ve got so many threats across the pitch, you look at their scrum, their ball game, their power game, their speed across the pitch, in terms of the skills they have to move the ball very quickly.”

Rowntree’s side have arrived in Cape Town ahead of the clash, and Leamy has reported that all is well in the camp following the near 14,00km journey to South Africa as they bid to repeat the trick from their regular season trip to the Stormers.

“Obviously it’s a bit of a spin down to this part of the world, but everything went off very well. We got to the hotel yesterday afternoon and we’ve just been resting up. We got out and had a hit on the pitch there earlier on and that went well. The boys are fresh, they’re in good spirits so all good so far.”

It promises to be a riveting encounter when the two sides face off this weekend, with Munster knowing they face a very tough challenge, but one they have overcome before.

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The Red Army face DHL Stormers in the Grand Final of the URC this Saturday in DHL stadium at 5:30pm.

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