Once again, fans will be treated to the biggest rivalry in modern Irish rugby playing out as Leinster travel to Thomond Park on Saturday in search of a Munster scalp.
Although the stadium will be devoid of fans, there is sure to be an electric atmosphere emanating from the pitch itself as red and blue jerseys forge a war of attrition honouring a tradition going back 142 years.
It will be the first time this season that the teams will meet after the original Round 9 fixture was postponed due to Covid-19.
During the 2019-20 campaign, they met on three occasions; in Round 9, where Leinster prevailed 13-6, then again in Round 14 during a typically spirited game where Leinster pipped their opponents 27-25 before crossing swords with them again in the semi-finals – Johnny Sexton’s charges leaving the field 13-3 victors.
In light of last season’s set of results, Munster will be desperately hungry to stick one on their old foes.
Overall, the teams have met on 102 occasions with Leinster winning 54, Munster 43 while they have drawn five times.
Adding some extra emotion to the contest, Munster number 8 CJ Stander will run out for the 150th time in the red jersey – a great achievement for the South African-born bruiser.
Leinster will be grateful to have the services of Garry Ringrose back in the outside centre position after the 25 year-old has seemingly recovered from his second jaw break since October last year.
In Munster’s last outing, on January 9th, they clashed with Connacht in another hard-fought Irish derby, emerging victorious 16-10.
Leinster also managed to do the business against Ulster, pulling off a 24-12 victory at the RDS.
Both teams will thus carry the confidence of winning ways into this fixture and, whatever cauldron of emotion boils within the respective change-rooms before the blast of the kick-off whistle, let us hope that it translates into a game worthy of this great Irish tradition.