“Thomond Park is one of the toughest places to play, but also one of the most inspiring”

Rob Lloyd News

Scarlets take on play-off rivals Munster at Thomond Park on Saturday evening in another crucial match in the Guinness PRO14 shake-up.

Scarlets backs coach Dai Flanagan spoke to the media at Parc y Scarlets this week to preview the trip to Limerick.

What are you expecting from Munster?

DF: “They are going to be tough. It is a home game for them and they are pretty decent at home, their record speaks for itself.

“We know what we need to do and it’s important we execute the plan we are putting in place. It is about us being us, we have to take the way we play to Thomond Park and I am sure we will give them a challenge

“Thomond Park is one of the toughest places to play, but it is also one of the most inspiring places to play; the crowd are excellent and you also have the history that comes with the ground. I am sure our boys will be up for it. It is Munster away and there is no reason not to be.”

What have you worked on after last week’s performance against the Kings?

DF: “We didn’t lack effort, there was a bit of lack of accuracy and we have worked hard to correct that this week. You can’t fault the boys’ effort, there were opportunities galore, we just didn’t take them. It is important we have the right mindset on Saturday to take them.

“We have a lot of experience in the group, they are not experienced in age, but they are in terms of games they have played. There has been a lot of conversations about what is coming. It is important we start well, we all know that. There have been a couple of away games this season when we haven’t started well. I am sure when we get there we will be ready.

“We have to be on it on both sides of the ball, that has been a theme this week. We can’t give loose turnovers and errors that allow teams to grow into the game, especially away from home. If we can take that away from them early on I’m sure we will be in a good place.”

Liam Williams will be linking up with the squad soon, how much of a boost is that?

DF: “We are really excited. Liam is a great and guy first and foremost. He is going to enhance the players around him, he works very hard and we have a lot of youngsters here who can learn a lot off him. We also all know what he can do on the field and we are excited about having Liam for the run-in 

“Selection will be tough, there is no bones about that, but they are all great players and are all going to help each other through it. There are a lot of games left to play and they will all play a lot of rugby, no doubt.

“We just need to make sure Liam is right, he has had a long time out and it is important that when he’s back he is back fully fit. Liam has been across conversations with Brad and Wayne (Pivac) and as far as I am aware it has been managed really well for the best for Liam and I’m sure that will continue.”

How far away is Rhys Patchell from returning from injury?

DF: “Rhys has trained well, but it is the same as Liam, when Rhys is ready Rhys will play.

“It is also important to recognise that Dan (Jones), Angus (O’Brien) and Ryan Lamb have taken ownership of this team and given us a lot of experience from the 10 shirt, they drive us around the field and also drive the week and manage what we do, where we do in regards plays, calls and how we take teams on. When Rhys comes in he needs to earn that shirt first and foremost, he knows that, he is a respectful guy as everyone knows and he is not expecting to walk straight into the side.”