MUNSTER kick-off their programme of Guinness PRO12 fixtures for 2015-2016 with a home fixture against Benetton Treviso on Saturday, September 5.
Last season’s PRO12 finalists Munster will play their opening fixture against the Italian side at Musgrave Park. The game will have a 7.45pm kick-off and will be live on TG4.
Anthony Foley’s charges second outing in the PRO12 is a Sunday, September 13 date with the Ospreys at Liberty Stadium, 2.30pm.
As it’s a World Cup year, there will be a two week break after the first two rounds of the league, and there will be a further break in between Rounds 3 and 4.
It’s back to back home games for Munster for Rounds 3 and 4, albeit alternating between Munster’s home venues. In round 3 Munster welcome title holders Glasgow Warriors to Thomond Park on Friday October 2 for the earlier kick-off time of 6pm, while in round 4 it’s Cardiff Blues in Musgrave Park on Saturday October 17.
In round 5 Munster travel to Wales for a Friday night Scarlets encounter and a week later Munster will play Ulster in the first interprovincial derby of the year at 6pm in Thomond Park on Friday October 30. The earlier kick-off times are to cater for Rugby World Cup programming, with the 3rd/4th play-off broadcast at 8pm that night.
The province will then travel to Murrayfield for round 7 against Edinburgh Rugby with the first block of league games then completed before the European Champions Cup rounds commence.
On the return to PRO12 action Thomond Park will host its second interpro derby with Connacht in Limerick on Saturday November 28, and round 9 will see Munster travel to Rodney Parade for a Sunday clash with Newport Gwent Dragons on December 6.
The Christmas period will see Leinster back in Thomond Park for the seasonal Round 10 fixture taking place on Sunday December 27 at 5.15pm. A trip to Kingspan Stadium will then round off the festive period with a Saturday afternoon kick-off against Ulster on January 2.
The final confirmed round, round 12, is for Saturday January 9th away to Cardiff Blues at the Arms Park.
Commenting on the fixtures, Munster Rugby CEO Garrett Fitzgerald said, “Looking at the fixtures we understand the Friday night is not ideal for supporters that have to travel. In saying that, we are in a better position this year with only 2 Friday home fixtures compared to the 5 we had last season for the same period.
“In listening to our support base each year we voice our concerns with regards fixture times and logistics. But like all clubs, in working with the tournament and broadcasters we are unable to set our own agenda and collectively work with all parties in getting the dates finalised.
“This year there are additional challenges with rounds played during the Rugby World Cup and this has led to different kick-off times in facilitating broadcasters and audiences of both tournaments.”