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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Northampton Saints

by Jim O'Connor, 2013-12-13

If this was to be Leinster's last competitive trip to England, and let's hope it's not, they certainly went out in style. Northampton lived up to its reputation as a proper rugby town and the few thousand Leinster fans that were lucky enough to be there last week certainly had a weekend to remember. The Northampton fans were welcoming before the match and extremely gracious in defeat afterwards, especially in the circumstances. Losing at home is one thing but taking a hiding like that is soul-destroying so to see so many of them come over to applaud and congratulate the delirious travelling fans was a mark of the club's true character.
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Match Preview: Northampton Saints vs Leinster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2013-12-06

Well it was nice while it lasted.

England's on-off relationship with the Heineken Cup finally seems to have reached the bitter end with their clubs voting on Thursday to boycott next season's event. They now seem to be trying to set up some sort of replacement tournament with their love-struck lapdogs the Welsh regions, which is equally hilarious and sad at the same time. The Heineken Cup without them will undoubtedly be poorer, even though the knock-out stages will largely be the same as recent years given how most of the English clubs have struggled to qualify from their pools (an average of just two a season for the past five years).
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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Castres Olympique

by Jim O'Connor, 2013-10-18

What a difference a win can make!

Travelling to last week's game it was hard to find too many Leinster fans who were expecting to win. Most expected a losing bonus point at best, given the combination of Leinster's poor recent form and their recent record against the Ospreys. However, stung from the loss against Munster and the suggestion that they couldn't perform without leaders like Leo Cullen and Brian O'Driscoll, Leinster's players stood up to be counted and produced a performance of real character.
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Match Preview: Ospreys vs Leinster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2013-10-18

So once more with feeling!

For the nineteenth and almost certainly the last time, Leinster launch into a Heineken Cup campaign with a trip to Swansea to face the Ospreys. Let's face it, even if an agreement is reached with the greedy English and self-centred French clubs, the tournament will never be the same again. A 20-team tournament with up to the 70% clubs from only two countries can't seriously call itself a European tournament. The thought of the pool stages being dominated by games between teams from the same country is depressing indeed.
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Match Preview: Exeter Chiefs vs Leinster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2013-01-18

Leinster got the five points they were after last week against the Scarlets. However there was still a sense of frustration after the match as Leinster felt they could have scored more than the five tries they got. They had the bonus point secured after 43 minutes and though the Scarlets were game, you still felt Leinster could have kicked on and really boosted the lowly try-count. However, their intensity visibly dropped after that and they only had Ian Madigan's late try to add to their total.
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