Ulster Director of Rugby Les Kiss admits that beating Munster in the Pro12 derby on Saturday could help to salvage a disappointing season.

The Northerners finished bottom of their Champions Cup pool and are behind fourth-placed Scarlets on matches won coming into the final three games of the season.

A trip to Ospreys and home game against Leinster will finish off the campaign and the Australian believes a play-off spot is still well within their grasp.

"I think it's possible," Kiss told RTÉ Sport.

"If you look at the top five teams, the two Welsh teams and the three Irish teams have local derbies. They're very tight affairs and it puts an interesting hue on the situation.

"It's there for the taking but it won't be easy. We've got Munster first and if we can get that job done, we meet a Welsh team and finish off with another local derby.

"If you don't make the finals, it's always disappointing. There's been a few disappointments this year for sure. But at the moment, we're in the hunt and that's what we're focused on."

In-form Munster are closing in on a home semi-final but Kiss is hoping the rewards on offer and recent history can give his men confidence - they won in Thomond in 2014 and secured bonus points in narrow defeats in their last two visits.

"There's a lot riding on it," he said.

"We've had a good record there recently so if there's something that will bring out the best in us, we'd expect it to be Munster at Thomond"

"Munster have had a good season. They're in good form and they've got a great squad.

"We're approaching it as one of the most massive challenges we've had this year.

"We've had a good record there recently so if there's something that will bring out the best in us, we'd expect it to be Munster at Thomond."

Listen to Munster v Ulster (kick-off 3pm) live on RTÉ Radio 1's Saturday Sport and follow our live blog on RTÉ.ie and the RTÉ News Now app