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Preview: Munster in familiar territory for URC final v Stormers

Before their semi-final meeting, Leinster head coach Leo Cullen preached caution over his side's favourites tag.

He referred to Munster's "singular focus" at the time, with Graham Rowntree's side having gone on a roll ever since their Heineken Champions Cup exit in the Round of 16.

It was a backhanded compliment of sorts. Here were Leinster fighting on both fronts, while plucky Munster had put all of their eggs into the BKT United Rugby Championship basket.

There's no doubt that he was correct in what he was saying though.

Munster have been a different animal since their Champions Cup exit in early April. If they beat the Stormers in Cape Town this evening they'll end their 12-year wait for silverware. Better one trophy than none.

At this stage of the season, everyone has a singular focus though, and it doesn't get much tougher in this competition than playing the Stormers in a Cape Town Grand Final.

The defending champions have selected a strong starting XV for the decider, with Springboks Marvin Orie and Deon Fourie both coming straight back into the side having recovered from injury.

Even just two seasons into the URC, these South African trips no longer seem as daunting as they were, particularly for Munster.

Last season they couldn't get out of the country after their Covid-19 outbreak in Pretoria, players and staff stranded in the self-isolation of their hotel rooms. This season, they can't stay away, with this trip being their third to South Africa in the space of just eight weeks.

Crucially, Rowntree's side are the only northern hemisphere side to have beaten the Stormers on their own patch in the last two seasons, with their 26-24 bonus-point win in Cape Town six weeks ago getting the ball rolling on their memorable run

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