Peter O’Mahony will miss the opportunity to lead Munster to their fourth RaboDirect PRO12 title this month but he is hoping to witness a dogged display in Glasgow on Friday.
The Munster skipper was ruled out for the remainder of the season last month when he sustained a shoulder injury in their European win over Toulouse.
The Irish outfit slipped to defeat twice in four RaboDirect PRO12 games in his absence - against fellow playoff hopefuls Glasgow Warriors and Ulster - but managed to secure a third-place finish.
The 24-year-old was in Edinburgh on Sunday to collect teammate JJ Hanrahan’s Rhino Golden Boot award at the annual RaboDirect PRO12 awards.
And when Rob Penney’s side return to Scotland on Friday, to face the in-form Warriors in their playoff semi-final, O’Mahony knows it will take a disciplined display to emerge victorious.
“It’s going to be a really tough game at the weekend, but it’s the semi-final of a huge competition so it’s always going to be tough,” he said.
“It’s away from home as well, it’ll be backs to the walls but we’re really looking forward to it.
“Rob has worked very hard for us and we’ve developed our team nicely over the last 24 months or so, it’s always nice to finish the season with silverware but there’s a big game this weekend before we can think about that.”
As for O’Mahony’s injury, it will keep the flanker out of Ireland’s summer tour to Argentina and possibly the start of the next RaboDirect PRO12 season - but he is trying to stay optimistic.
“It’s the time you want to be competing in big games and unfortunately injuries are a big part of rugby at the moment and it’s very important how you deal with it,” he added.
“It’s lucky in one sense, it’s not a three or four week injury that I was pushing hard to get back, it’s a long-term injury so those are the cards I’ve been dealt so I just have to get on with it now.
“We’re spoiled by the quality of the professionals that we work with and they’ve a big plan set up for me, they have plenty of experience and they’ll guide me through the next few months no doubt.
“It’s coming along, it’s a long process, it’s a five or six-monther and I’m fairly raw, it’s fairly soon after surgery but all signs are good at the moment and the physios are happy with the way I’m progressing at the moment.”