Planet Rugby

Leinster secure home quarter-final

21st January 2011 19:40

Share:

Sean O Brien leinster v racing metro

Sean O'Brien: Man-of-the-match performance for Leinster

Leinster showed their title credentials by smashing Racing Metro 36-11 on Friday, securing a crucial home quarter-final in the process.

The Irish side had already won Pool 2, but needed a fifth victory to guarantee a knock-out tie in Dublin and they duly secured it thanks to five tries.

That took their tally in six pool games to 21 tries and on this form the 2009 champions look to have every chance of regaining their crown.

Leinster looked dangerous every time they had possession in the Metro half and five tries was probably the least they deserved.

Their lines of attack, support play and perhaps most crucially their patience all proved too much for a Racing side which had previously lost just once at home in the last 12 months.

Juan Martin Hernandez put Metro ahead with an early penalty but after the Argentinian failed to find touch with a penalty, Leinster pounced.

After a spell of sustained pressure, Jonathan Sexton and Shane Horgan shipped the ball out wide and Isa Nacewa was in at the corner.

Hernandez missed a penalty on 13 minutes but from the re-start, Racing scored a try almost from nowhere, teenager Virimi Vakatawa collecting the drop-out and running through three tackles down the right touchline to score.

But that was the high point for the hosts. Moments later they tried to run out of their own 22, lost possession and Isaac Boss sent Sean O'Brien storming through by the posts.

O'Brien should have scored or set up a second try only to knock on five yards out, but it proved of no consequence as less than a minute later more brilliant handling put Sexton over.

An Hernandez penalty cut the deficit to 10 points at the break but a comeback never looked likely.

Sexton's penalty stretched the lead and just past the hour mark more clinical and patient build-up work saw Nacewa put Sexton in for his second try.

It only remained for birthday boy Brian O'Driscoll to get in on the act and he duly did 10 minutes from time, bursting through with a trademark darting run.

The scorers:

For Racing Metro:
Try: Vakatawa
Pens: Hernandez 2

For Leinster:
Tries: Nacewa, O'Brien, O'Driscoll, Sexton 2
Cons: Sexton 4
Pen: Sexton

Racing-Métro: 15 Dan Scarbrough, 14 Benjamin Fall, 13 Virimi Vakatawa, 12 Andrea Masi, 11 Julien Saubade, 10 Juan Martin Hernandez, 9 Nicolas Durand, 8 Alvaro Galindo, 7 Bernard Le Roux, 6 Remi Vaquiin, 5 Francois van der Merwe, 4 Santiago Dellape, 3 Scott Zimmermann, 2 Gregory Arganese, 1 Julien Brugnaut.
Replacements: 16 Benjamin Noirot, 17 Andrea Lo Cicero, 18 Benjamin Sa, 19 Lionel Nallet, 20 Mathieu Loree, 21 François Steyn, 22 Jacques Cronje, 23 Antoine Batut.

Leinster: 15 Isa Nacewa, 14 Shane Horgan, 13 Brian O'Driscoll, 12 Gordon D'Arcy, 11 Luke Fitzgerald, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Isaac Boss, 8 Sean O'Brien, 7 Shane Jennings, 6 Rhys Ruddock, 5 Nathan Hines, 4 Leo Cullen (c), 3 Mike Ross, 2 Richardt Strauss, 1 Cian Healy.
Replacements: 16 Jason Harris-Wright, 17 Heinke van der Merwe, 18 Clint Newland, 19 Devin Toner, 20 Dominic Ryan, 21 Eoin Reddan, 22 Eoin O'Malley / Ian Madigan, 23 Fergus McFadden.

Referee: Greg Garner

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Heineken Cup
Saturday , April 26
Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne15:40
Sunday , April 27
Toulon vs Munster15:30
More Heineken Cup fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Saturday , April 26
Glasgow vs EdinburghGlasgow vs Edinburgh Preview
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
Sunday , April 27
Wasps vs Bath13:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 25
Blues vs WaratahsBlues vs Waratahs Preview
Brumbies vs ChiefsBrumbies vs Chiefs Preview
Sharks vs HighlandersSharks vs Highlanders Preview
Saturday , April 26
Hurricanes vs Reds19:35
Western Force vs Bulls17:40
Cheetahs vs Stormers17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 20
Northampton 36 - 21 London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Report
Newcastle 18 - 23 SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Cardiff Blues 17 - 13 ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Report
Newport Gwent D'gons 10 - 20 Ospreys
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Bath 32 - 20 WorcesterBath vs Worcester Report
Exeter 12 - 55 SaleExeter vs Sale Report
Wasps 38 - 30 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Zebre 26 - 13 EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Report
Connacht 23 - 32 MunsterConnacht vs Munster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Oyonnax 19 - 19 ToulouseOyonnax vs Toulouse Report
Biarritz 19 - 13 Brive
Perpignan 31 - 46 ToulonPerpignan vs Toulon Report
Racing Metro Paris 22 - 6 Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Stade Francais 37 - 23 Bordeaux-Begles
Grenoble 21 - 21 Bayonne
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 17 - 18 CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Report
Sharks 19 - 8 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
Waratahs 19 - 12 BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Report
Stormers 18 - 3 LionsStormers vs Lions Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Castres 22 - 15 MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens2080
2Northampton2071
3Bath2064
4Leicester Tigers2064
5Harlequins2058