Niall Scannell: 'This isn't pressure, it's where we want to be'

Munster face Scarlets in the Guinness PRO12 final on Saturday afternoon

Munster's Niall Scannell says he's not feeling the pressure ahead of the Guinness PRO12 championship final against Scarlets.

The sides meet at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday evening, a year on from their Champions Cup play-off game at Thomond Park.

"That was a massively different environment," Scannell told reporters on Monday. "That was real pressure.

"This isn't pressure, this is enjoyment. This is where we want to be. We're going to enjoy this and be excited about it."

Rassie Erasmus' side came through their semi-final clash against Ospreys in Limerick, but Scannell says Scarlets present different problems.

The Welsh side have won their last six games on the bounce and rolled over Leinster at the RDS to become the first away team to win a PRO12 semi-final.

"They're hugely impressive. In defence, they put so much pressure on Leinster forcing them to turn over the ball. That's not easy to do against Leinster. I might look easy or maybe Leinster had an off day, but Scarlets put them under huge pressure.

"When they get a hold of the ball, they've got some exciting ball carriers and some great backs.

"The thing I found so impressive is how physical they are at the breakdown - both on the attacking and the defensive side of the ball."

Munster's Niall Scannell speaking to reporters on Monday at a press conference in UL. Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie


The Irish province return to the Aviva Stadium following their defeat to Saracens in the Champions Cup quarter-final and Scannell pointed to the scrum as one of the parts of their game where they can punish Scarlets this weekend.

"We were very happy with how it went the last day. We were very consistent which is the hardest thing at the moment. It's so hard for referees to make decisions because there are such physical men in there.

"To get consistent results across 80 minutes is hard, but we did that the last day. It gives the backs a massive attacking platform."

He added: "We know that and we've put huge emphasis on it. Not long ago people were talking about our scrum being our weakness. It's a credit to Jerry Flannery that we've turned that around."

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