Edwards backs Munster glory

Strength of Munster's previous displays convinces Edwards they will win

Last Updated: 23/05/08 11:05am

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Edwards: Backing Munster

Edwards: Backing Munster

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Wasps head coach Shaun Edwards has backed Munster to win Saturday's Heineken Cup final, live on Sky Sports 3 from 4.30pm.

Live on Sky Watch the Heineken Cup final live on Sky Sports 3 from 4.30pm on Saturday May 24.

Edwards, who is also the part-time defence coach of Wales, believes Munster see themselves as underdogs for the game at the Millennium Stadium.

But he thinks they will beat their French opponents, cheered on by thousands of fans in Cardiff.

Writing in his column in The Guardian, the former Great Britain rugby league scrum-half says: "Until this season it would have been fine to characterise this final as between the aristocrats of Toulouse and the artisans of Munster.

Classy elements

"However Declan Kidney, in charge for his final Munster match before he takes over as coach of Ireland, has added a few classy New Zealand elements to the mix.

"The pack is still a rampaging force and Ronan O'Gara's boot is still a considerable tactical weapon, but if the fly-half decides to run the ball then options abound in Lifeimi Mafi, Rua Tipoki and Doug Howlett, as well as the home-grown options."

He adds: "Toulouse, even in the weakened state they were against London Irish, seem to have class everywhere and with Florian Fritz fit, Guy Noves' selection today will have extra interest in the centre.

"The coach and the player have for a couple of weeks now been telling anyone who will listen that there is no way Fritz can make the final. Those who saw the Montauban game at the weekend suggest otherwise, with a Fritz-Yannick Jauzion pairing on the cards."

Backing underdogs

But in conclusion, he backs Munster to win, saying: "I'm putting my money on the underdogs, a judgment based on the manner in which Munster put away Gloucester in the quarter-finals before summoning up a massive defensive performance against Saracens in a semi-final that was a brilliant advert for European rugby.

"And they know how to win in Cardiff, where the stands will be packed with fans from Cork and Limerick and the expat Irish. Game on."

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