Why will it be different this season?

That's the question for Munster winger Andrew Conway.

This week former Munster and Ireland captain Donal Lenihan spoke passionately about the hurt within the province at how things are panning out as the team enters a second decade without silverware.

The two-time European champions are plodding along, many fans reckon, and the fear among the supporters is that when it comes to the business end of the season, they will be found wanting again.

Conway, who has been at the club for nine years, says he knows there is plenty of room for improvement and cites the influence of Caroline Currid, who joined the backroom staff at the start of the season, as a reason for why the fans should keep the faith.

The Sligo woman is a sports psychologist who has recently worked with the Limerick hurlers, winners of three of the last four All-Ireland titles, and helped Dublin end their Sam Maguire famine in 2011.

Caroline Currid celebrates with the Liam MacCarthy Cup in 2021

"Caroline has brought in a real winning mindset and winning experience," Conway, who will line out for Munster against Wasps on Sunday in the Heineken Champions Cup, told RTÉ Sport.

"We've had a few really interesting meetings with her, the playing group and the coaches.

"We’re talking about stuff we’ve never done before, including our mental preparation. It’s in our weekly schedule.

"In times gone by, in teams I've been involved with, it’s kind of seen as secondary.

"You do all the physical prep, training two or three times a day, four or five times a week and the match and the physical recovery.

"You are kind of half left to your own devices in how you mentally recover from playing a poor match but also in a match you’ve played well.

"You see it a lot after a team has plays some of their best rugby, the next week they play really poor.

"We need to learn why that is. We need someone who has been there and done that with different teams.

"It’s not something that’s specific to rugby, it’s sport.

"It’s something we are working on really hard behind the scenes and there is massive buy-in from the players and coaches. We are having different conversations.

"Of course, our game needs to grow because we’ve got into a couple of semi-finals and a final and we haven’t won.

"But we are working behind the scenes with Caroline, who is opening our minds to different ways of thinking, to challenging us in ways that we haven’t actually been challenged before.

"It’s early days, we’ve been working together for about six months but you can feel the differences from different parts of the squad; from guys who are frustrated that they are not getting games to guys who are at the back end of their career.

"She’s working with all those guys, me included, and then it goes back to when it comes to the business end of the season, semi-finals against the big European teams, against Leinster, that we are ready to go and mentally prepared to mix up our game and have that freedom and detachment to go out and play rugby and then you are in with a shot."

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Munster have already qualified for the knockout stages but are looking to improve their seeding in the hope of securing a safer passage if they negotiate their way out of a two-legged round of 16.

A number of former players and pundits have been critical of the team's brand of rugby but the Ireland international, who has scored 13 tries in 27 Ireland caps, insists that proving the critics wrong is not a source of motivation for the team.

"With all due respect, we understand why there is criticism, 100%. Don’t get me wrong, we haven't played to our potential in some games but I genuinely believe that a lot of the criticism is over the top," said the 30-year-old, who was speaking as the tournament marks the 27th consecutive season Heineken’s partnership with European rugby, and the fifth season of the Heineken and Rugby Players Ireland partnership.

"There are times when we need to be better and a lot more diverse.

"At times, it’s just wrong.

"I don’t expect journalists to understand the game in the same way that we do because I go into meetings three or four times a day to look at rugby. My job is to understand rugby in its most detailed form.

"The guys who are writing about us, it isn’t. It's to write newspaper articles, it’s to cover the game, to give fans a snapshot of what they’ve seen.

"If we are taking what people say in the narrative and taking that to heart and using other people’s opinions to set our own agenda we are going to be in big trouble."