Johann van Graan brushes off 'cynical' Munster claim

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent at Thomond Park

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Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent at Thomond Park

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ckinsella@limerickleader.ie

Johann van Graan brushes off 'cynical' Munster claim

Munster captain Peter O'Mahony celebrates scoring his side's third try against Leicester Tigers at Thomond Park on Saturday night

NEW Munster head coach Johann van Graan shrugged off Matt O’Connor’s criticism of his side being ‘cynical’ at the breakdown in Saturday’s Champions Cup clash at Thomond Park.

Former Leinster boss O’Connor, in a post-match interview, said Munster had been ‘very diligent and cynical, killing the ball whenever we had opportunities which made it hard for us to score.’

O’Connor added: "It's always the same here (Thomond Park), you have to make sure you are accurate. They are very committed and you have to be more accurate."

Asked for his response to O’Connor’s comments, Van Graan said that is was up to both sides to adapt to the referee as quickly as possible.

Van Graan said: “I think a rugby game is played for 80 minutes. That’s 30 guys on a field with one referee and the challenge is to adapt to the referee as quickly as possible. I thought the referee had a very good game.

”There is 50-50 decisions going both ways and no, we are happy with what we did out there. We’ll take this win , review it over the weekend and start again on Monday.”

Leicester have lost fullback Telusa Veainu to a broken jaw following an accidental head collision with Munster winger Andrew Conway. Conway was also forced off  following the 48th-minute incident.

Tigers boss O’Connor said the Munster winger had ‘the duty of care’ to the Leicester player as he contested Conor Murray’s box-kick.

“You saw it, I saw it,” O’Connor said at the post-match press conference.

Van Graan later replied: “It was a kick in the air and it was a collision between two players and both guys got injured. I hope they both will be fine.

“I just spoke to him (Andrew Conway) in the changing room, he’s okay. Obviously he took a big knock, got a bit of blood all round, but he is fine. Obviously the normal procedure will take place as time goes.”