Racing 92 were well-worth the draw in their Champions Cup clash against Munster at Thomond Park, according to Alan Quinlan.
The former Munster player praised the Parisians for an equally talented and dogged performance in Limerick on Monday’s OTB AM.
While Munster would have wanted nothing less than a win before the game, Quinlan felt that they shouldn’t be too disappointed as they also impressed on Saturday.
“When they look back on the game they’ll be a little bit disappointed with some of the defence. They got a little bit narrow at times.
“But for me, I find it hard to criticise them in any way because I thought they were fantastic. It’s right up there with the best away-team performances ever in Thomond Park.
“They were magnificent. For the quality of their execution, their attack, the competitiveness at the breakdown, how they defended - they were magnificent,” Quinlan said.
Racing truly broke the mould on Saturday in regards to French sides performing away from home and now look favourites to top the pool after their bonus-point win over Saracens in round one.
“Sometimes the thing you expect from French teams, especially away from home is that they’ll drop off and their desire will wane a little bit… but I think having Zebo and Donnacha Ryan out there on the field makes a difference to that attitude.
“But they’re a side that want to do well now in Europe and in the last couple of weeks they’ve hit form,” Quinlan commented.
Hanrahan shines despite late drop goal miss
JJ Hanrahan was arguably Munster’s best player and while he did miss a late drop goal to win the game, the Kerry man impressed at fly-half.
“Hanrahan was fantastic and he deserves great credit for that. His attack and his control.
“You know you watch the talent and you’ve seen the talent in little sporadic flashes over the years. That was his best performance. I thought he was superb. That’s down to confidence and self-belief.
“The drop-goal itself - very few of us in our lives will know what it’s like to be standing in that position with that kind of pressure.
“It wasn’t the hardest drop-goal in the world. Unfortunately, it ruined the fairytale ending for him and for Munster,” Quinlan said.
Munster take on Edinburgh in the Pro14 next before welcoming Saracens to Thomond Park the following Saturday, where a win will be needed to keep their Heineken Champions Cup chances alive.