MUNSTER’S away game against Challenge Cup finalists Glasgow Warriors at 7.35pm on Saturday will be the last of the four URC quarter-finals to be played over the weekend.
The quarters kick-off when Ulster host Connacht in Belfast on Friday (7.35pm), and then the following afternoon holders DHL Stormers tackle their South African rivals Vodacom Bulls in Cape Town (2.30pm) and then later at 5pm it’s number one ranked Leinster against Cell C Sharks at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium (5pm).
In a change to last season’s rules, the teams with the highest seeding in each semi-final will have home advantage on the weekend ending May 13. The final, on May 27, will be staged at whichever semi-final winner has the highest ranking.
Semi-finals: Leinster (1)/Cell C Sharks (8) v Glasgow Warriors (4)/Munster (5); Ulster (2)/Connacht (7) v DHL Stormers (3)/Vodacom Bulls (6).
Ahead of the action, a win in Scotland would likely earn Munster, who are on an impressive run of form, a glamour showdown with Leinster in Dublin.
It’s 12 years since Munster last won a league title, courtesy of a memorable 19-9 defeat of Leinster at a packed Thomond Park with Limerick’s David Wallace turning in a man-of-the-match performance.
The meeting of Munster and Glasgow is the first knockout clash between the pair since their meeting in the 2015 PRO12 Final in Belfast.
Eight years ago, the Scottish side emerged comfortable 31-13 victors.
Rob Harley scored an early opening try for Glasgow, which was converted by Finn Russell. Ian Keatley got the first score for Munster, a penalty soon after. Glasgow then scored two tries without reply to lead 21-3 on the half-hour mark and hold a 10-21 advantage at half time. Andrew Smith scored the Munster five pointer just before the interval.
Keatley reduced the lead to 13-21 on 50 minutes with another penalty but a Finn Russell try and conversion in the 60th minute made the score 13-28 in favour of Glasgow. Glasgow managed another penalty from Duncan Weir to deservedly land the silverware.
It was Paul O’Connell’s last outing in a Munster jersey.