Munster Vs Leinster Has Some Huge Added Significance This Year
Latest posts by Will Matthews (see all)
- Joe Marler on why Owen Farrell has stepped away from England - December 6, 2023
- France star scores one of the most bizarre tries you will ever see in rugby - December 5, 2023
- Munster hit with huge double injury blow ahead of Champions Cup opener - December 4, 2023
The late, great, number eight.
When Munster and Leinster collide it’s always memorable. But this weekend’s PRO14 clash at the Aviva with have added significance.
The game falls one day short of last year’s corresponding fixture, which was Anthony Foley’s final game as Munster’s head coach before he tragically passed away just over a week later. It was also the last time Leinster head coach Leo Cullen saw Foley alive.
“It’s eerie,” said Leinster head coach Cullen.
“Obviously with Axel last year, that was the last time I saw him alive so it brings back amazing thoughts really.
“Our thoughts are with his family at this time. It will always be the case when we come across this fixture that I’ll think of Axel. He was someone I always looked up to.
“As a player I was always four years behind him in the cycle. He was number 8 in the ’92 [Ireland] schoolboys, I was number 8 in the ‘96 schoolboys. It’s hard to believe he’s no longer with us.”
For Munster boss Rassie Erasmus, he says it’s a game he will always remember.
“For me personally I would remember that game,” Erasmus recalled
“There were certain things that happened during that week.
“Even after that game that we lost I remember things that he said to me so for me personally it will come back. But I think the players have got a real good way of keeping him involved.”
No doubt both sides will be thinking of him this weekend.