It was nice to get back to the RDS to see another home live game after the November Internationals. Because Leinster were bulk suppliers to the Ireland team, there were plenty of notable absentees from the Leinster line-up. However despite this, it was exciting to see some of Leinster’s younger players getting a chance.
This was really a game of two halves, or more accurately 45 minutes and 35 minutes! In the first 45 minutes Leinster scored four tries and secured the bonus point through some beautiful running rugby. However after that they didn’t score any points for the remainder of the match. They let the Dragons back into the game but held out to deny them any points from their trip.
Despite the last thirty minutes, Leinster played really encouraging, heads-up rugby. They constantly looked to keep the tempo of their attack up and were always looking to offload. Some of the tries were really nice on the eye and it was a nice mix of forward power linking with the back’s electric pace and passing.
There were some really encouraging performances from a number of players. I thought the centre Rory O’Loughlin had a brilliant game, with his break for Carbery’s 4th try a real highlight. Another player that impresses me every time he plays this season is Adam Byrne, he is fast and strong and seems to have a real eye for the tryline. It was also a great game for Jack Conan in only his second game back from injury.
Despite the bonus point win on Saturday the next two weeks against Northampton Saints will be the making or breaking of our season. Lose these games and our stint in Europe will be over. Therefore it was interesting to see Carbery taken off before the 50th minute. This probably means that Sexton is injured next week and Carbery may start. It’s amazing what this guy has achieved so far this season!