Munster wrong to play 'inexperienced' Wootton ahead of Zebo, says Brian O'Driscoll

Munster wrong to play 'inexperienced' Wootton ahead of Zebo, says Brian O'Driscoll

Irish rugby icon Brian O'Driscoll has said that Munster coach Johann van Graan made a mistake by starting with Simon Zebo on the bench for their 27-22 Champions Cup semi-final defeat against Racing 92.

Munster conceded early after Camille Chat's powerful carrying teed up winger Thomas, who handed off Alex Wootton to score in the right corner.

After Zebo was introduced, his 63rd-minute try sparked a revival, before setting up a try for Andrew Conway in the closing stages - but it was too little, too late for Munster.

"It was a big call leaving Zebo out, because Wootten got caught ball-watching on that first Teddy Thomas try," O'Driscoll told Newstalk's Off The Ball show.

"In hindsight, of course, it retrospectively turned out to be a bad decision, because he came on, played really well, and because Wootten was a little bit exposed.

"Maybe he is inexperienced, at that level, against that quality of an operator.

"He didn't understand the role of playing wing and owning the outside. As a winger, you can't get burned on the outside. Whatever about getting stepped back inside, and your hustle as to plug that and get a shot on them - but don't get smoked on the outside."

- Digital desk

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