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Published: 00:29 | 16/4/18

Racing 92 confident ahead of Munster clash


Racing 92 coach Laurent Labit is confident his side can beat Munster in Sunday's Champions Cup semi-final in Bordeaux.

Top 14 side Racing will play their tenth game in ten consecutive weekends since 18 February when they take on Johann van Graan's side at the Stade Chaban-Delmas, a match which will be shown live on BT Sport 3 on the eir Sport pack [kick-off 3.15pm Irish time].

Racing were beaten 42-27 by Toulouse on Sunday after resting 12 players for the Top 14 game at Stade Ernest-Wallon, but Labit expects the Paris-based side to be fit, focused and recharged ahead of this weekend's Champions Cup semi-final.

"The sequence of matches is complicated, but this run of fixtures happened to us two years ago [in their run to the 2016 final] and we have managed the squad to make sure it's very much about strategy and recovery," he told l'Equipe.

"Munster is a team we know well, we have played them the last two seasons and we have a former Munster player here with us [Donnacha Ryan].

"We have a squad that can challenge in two competitions, but we haven't won anything yet and it's titles we're after."

Former New Zealand fly-half Dan Carter, who is likely to be on the bench for Sunday's game, has backed Racing to reach the Champions Cup final for the second time in three seasons.

The 36-year-old started Racing's 21-9 Champions Cup final defeat to Saracens in Lyon in 2016, but lasted just 41 minutes before limping out of the game at the Stade de Lyon with a leg injury.

 "We're going to be up against a class side in Munster and it's going to be a huge challenge," Carter said.

"We are really proud of the team to reach the semi-finals of this competition. 

"This team has historically not done that well in Europe in the past so we're really looking forward to the semi-final.

"A big part of the reason I came to play in France was because I think we can go all the way.

"The team got close a few years ago, but we're the only French team in the last four and it's really important we get through."

Munster face Racing 92 in the European Champions Cup semi-final at the Stade Chaban-Delmas in Bordeaux on Sunday, 22 April, live on BT Sport 3 on the eir Sport pack [kick-off 3.15pm Irish time].

Image: Getty Images/ David Rogers

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