Ken Owens says the Scarlets have learned from last month's defeat. Pic: Getty Images.

Ken Owens Says There Are No Dublin Scars, Only Determination To Put Things Right

Ken Owens concedes Leinster are as close as a team gets to perfection, but insists the Scarlets will travel to Dublin without fear for Saturday’s Guinness Pro14 final.

It is a quick return to the scene of last month’s drubbing at the Aviva Stadium, where the Scarlets came a cropper to the Irish province.

The Wales hooker and Scarlets skipper was in the team demolished 38-16 in the Champions Cup semi-final as Leinster powered on before winning the final against Racing 92.

Now, the sides meet again with the Pro14 title on the line, although as relevant in Scarlets’ minds is their May form of last year when they beat Munster to lift the trophy having already beaten Leinster at the RDS in the semi-finals.

Owens, who is set to captain Wayne Pivac’s side with John Barclay absent, says that memory remains fresh in the Scarlets’ minds this week – despite what happened in European battle.

“The boys are pretty confident in their abilities,” stated Owens, who missed last year’s final through injury.

“Going to the Aviva again won’t hold any fears.

“Winning against Munster, the boys enjoyed it who started that day, but we were disappointing the last time we went to the Aviva.

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“That hasn’t been entirely wiped from our memories – it’s niggling there slightly, and we’re looking to right the wrongs from that.

“But we’re just happy to be involved at this stage once again and going to Dublin, having everything to gain.”

However the hooker acknowledges that the Scarlets are playing against a team that is close to perfection.

“They know how to win rugby matches, that’s why they’re the best side in Europe at the moment,” he said.

They’ve as close as you’re going to get to a perfect side.

“They can win in different ways. There was poor weather in the (Champions Cup) final, facing a difficult team especially size-wise against Racing.

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“But they showed their experience and ground out the win, that’s what you’ve got to do sometimes.

“Then against Munster, to back that up especially as Munster were trying to bounce back from their (European) semi-final loss – and get to another final, is pretty good.”

Owens insists that his team will evolve from the one that lost the Champions Cup encounter.

“It’s another opportunity there to right some wrongs from the semi-final,” he said.

“You’ve got to adapt what you’re doing as teams will come at you in different ways. It’s something else in your armory”.


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