Rodney record won’t win it alone

Guinness PRO12 Editor

25 Nov 2010


Dragons boss Paul Turner insists the Rodney Parade factor won’t be enough to beat Munster unless it’s accompanied by an outstanding all-round performance.

Turner’s men have an impressive home record having lost just twice in the Magners League last season in a campaign which saw victories over all four Play-Off semi-finalists.

Munster were comprehensively dispatched 31-22 in early March but Turmer has dismissed any talk that playing at Rodney Parade will be the deciding factor in Saturday’s Round 9 encounter with the league leaders.

Instead, the former Wales international knows that the Dragons’ hopes of victory depend on whether they can improve from their showing in the 27-6 defeat to Leinster last weekend.

“We are always expected to do well at home and win and have done that against Munster over the last couple of years,” Turner told the South Wales Echo.

“Rodney Parade is always a factor but it doesn’t necessarily win or lose you games.

“We need to be better all round than we were against Leinster.

“The coughing up of the ball cost us. Do that and you are doubling your tackle count, and you can’t keep tackling against the good sides.

“(We need to improve) our kick return, contesting the ball in the middle third and we were a little bit of a pop gun attack.

“We are getting better defensively – which is usually the bed rock of good sides – and there were no system errors in Dublin, just missed one-on-one tackles.

“We have got to try to keep our shape and stretch the opposition’s defence – the Scarlets did that well in Cork.”

One man the Dragons will have to keep quiet if they want to make it three homes from four this term is Munster playmaker Paul Warwick.

The Australian has been in superb form of later, guiding the Red Army to the top of the Magners League standings and masterminding the famous mid-week victory over the Wallabies earlier this month.

And former fly-half Turner is fully aware of how dangerous Warwick can be if he is allowed to get into his stride.

“We can remember him well from his Connacht days when he flittered around a bit between full-back and fly-half. I think it is fair to say that they never really got the best out of him but Munster certainly have,” added Turner.

“He has been integral to their Heineken Cup campaigns over the last few years and poses a real threat.

“He is another of a number of Australians who have come to the northern hemisphere and played flat on the gain line, mixed their game up and played with huge variety to their game.”