7 Jun, 15:39
ERC can confirm that the Federation Française de Rugby (FFR) has withdrawn its application to host the 2014 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup finals, due to the ongoing uncertainty regarding the availability of the Stade de France.
Munster coach Alan Gaffney is confident the despair of Ireland's Grand Slam dream being shattered last Sunday will not affect their bid for a place in the last four of the Heineken Cup when they meet champions Leicester Tigers.
"It has been something of a case of re-introducing ourselves and some of the players returning from international duty look extremely tired, it has been a very hard programme for some of them," said Gaffney
"Peter Stringer, John Hayes and Anthony Foley in particular have been through the mill and, if I sense they need more time to recover, then they will get it.
"But they are all professional players, they know what they have to do. Ireland certainly did not deserve to be beaten 42-6 but that game is gone and we have to move on to the next challenge - playing the champions at Welford Road.
"They have the capability of getting up for the match - they have done it before and I am sure they can do it again. We realise the magnitude of the huge task we have ahead as four of that England pack play for Leicester and they are a very serious set of forwards.
"The possible return of Austin Healey, who is such a major player for Leicester, will be a big plus for them if they can get him on the pitch. He is a magical player who can have a major influence on a game."