Munster centre Damian de Allende
MUNSTER'S World Cup winning centre Damian de Allende said games like Friday night's marquee Guinness PRO14 semi-final showdown with Leinster are exactly the reason why he came to the province.
Munster will be looking to end a two game losing run against Leinster in Pro14 semi-finals in Dublin when the arch rivals go head-to-head at the Aviva Stadium, 7.35pm.
Looking ahead to the game today, Springboks' centre de Allende who impressed in Munster's interprovincial fixtures with Leinster and Connacht in recent weekends said: “For me, personally, no matter where I play I always strive to win tournaments and championships.
“I signed for Munster because I feel that they have the credentials and the coaching staff and the players and heart. From what I’ve watched on TV, obviously I’ve only played two games here, but I feel they have that team environment that they actually want to achieve.
“You could go to another squad where they have all the stars and the names in their team, but it’s like they don’t want that success or they’re not working for that success.
“I feel, even before the two games, there’s a real energy, want and desire, not just to get to a semi-final or final but to actually win semi-finals and finals. And not just once or twice, but consistently in the Pro14 and Champions Cup as well.
“Friday night is going to be a very tough encounter but hopefully we will pitch up. It’s a short turnaround, but we know it’s just a mental thing. We haven’t played a lot of rugby over the last six months so there are going to be sore bodies still on Thursday night.
"I think if we get the right mindset when we pitch up on Friday night, knowing that we have one opportunity and forgetting about everything else in the past and not even worrying about the final, just staying in the moment for 80 minutes and hopefully we can walk off with big smiles on our faces on Friday night."