Munster is facing more injury concerns ahead of their historic Crusaders match
The Crusaders, the Super Rugby Pacific winners, will play the URC champion Munster in a world-first “Clash of Champions” in February.
The previous season, Graham Rowntree’s team shocked regular season table-toppers and provincial rivals Leinster in the semi-final with a drop goal from Jack Crowley, and went on to defeat the Stormers in South Africa to capture the storied URC title.
In Hamilton, Scott Robertson’s Crusaders defeated the Chiefs 25–20 to win their eighth straight Super Rugby title. Rob Penney, the former Munster manager, will take over in Christchurch following Robertson’s departure to coach the All Blacks following the World Cup, adding even more intrigue to the first-ever “Clash of Champions.”
Munster will host the Crusaders in a ‘Clash of Champions’
The game is slated for Saturday, February 3, which falls on the same weekend as the Guinness Six Nations opening weekend in 2024. However, Ireland is not participating in the event as Andy Farrell’s team travels to France on Friday night to begin play.
This is the first-ever meeting between the URC and Super Rugby champions. On their European preseason trip, Penney will also be leading the Crusaders against Bristol.
Ian Flanagan, CEO of Munster Rugby, stated: “We are excited to have the Super Rugby champions play a historic match against the Crusaders here in Munster.”
We have a long and illustrious tradition of hosting visiting teams, so I’m sure that the game in February of next year will be a memorable event for everyone.
Munster issue major squad update ahead of inaugural
The inaugural ‘Clash of the Champions’ takes place on Saturday between Cursaders and Graham Rowntree’s Munster.
The Reds’ matchup with the Southern Hemisphere’s URC winners and the Northern Hemisphere’s champions in Super Rugby is a first of its sort.
The anticipated attendance for the Saturday’s match at Páirc Uí Chaoimh is forty,885, even though Munster will not have the Irish players there due to their Six Nations commitments.
This season, the Reds have struggled with injuries, missing over 20 players from the roster at one time.
Since Australian and New Zealand clubs have been working on the World Club Competition for years, it was impossible to pass up the chance for Super teams to face their counterparts in the Northern Hemisphere.
Rugby present especially difficult competition since they have a reputation of giving touring sides a difficult time. Additionally, Rob Penney, our new head coach, coached there, so there’s that extra link.