JJ Hanrahan admits that Munster’s young guns are keeping the established players on their toes.
Emerging stars Jake Flannery, Jack Crowley, and Ben Healy are leading the wave of new talent emerging from the Academy system.
And Hanrahan can only see positives.
He said: “There’s so many of them coming now. I’m driving fast now and looking in the rearview mirror. They’re all quality and there’s plenty of depth and that’s great for Munster. It makes the province better and pushes the medium-aged lads along and keeps pressure on us.”
Hanrahan, himself, is in a good place with Munster. It has been a long, hard grind for the 27-year-old Kerry native to establish himself in the red jersey and even now he owes his place in the side to the absence of long-term injury victims Joey Carbery and Tyler Bleyendaal. But he has taken the opportunity with gusto and has been a central figure in the province’s recent wins.
“That has given me a run of games and it definitely makes a big difference”, he acknowledged. “You’ve just got to be ready for your opportunity.
“I’ve had a lot of time to work on a lot of things throughout the year. But it is unfortunate for the lads that are injured. I’ve been there myself, out for the season and it’s not nice”.
Hanrahan and Munster now turn their attention to tomorrow’s Guinness PRO14 visit of the Scarlets to Thomomd Park with everybody well aware of how important a result is in the context of leading the way in Conference B.
“If we can get bit more of the second half display that we put in at Zebre (last Friday) and play for 80 minutes, then we should be right,” he said of their room for improvement.
“They’re three points behind us in the table so it’s a big one this weekend. They’re a side of high quality and we are under no illusions about what needs to be done.”
Meanwhile Scarlets have confirmed Wales full-back Liam Williams has joined the region for the remainder of the 2019-20 season.
The region announced in December 2019 Williams would be returning from Saracens but he will link up with Scarlets sooner than expected
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