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Match Preview: ASM Clermont Auvergne vs Leinster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2012-04-27

It's them again!

After crossing paths three times in the last two seasons, you always got the sense that Leinster and Clermont Auvergne would renew acquaintances again this term.
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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Cardiff Blues

by Jim O'Connor, 2012-04-06

After what seems like a very long time, (it's eleven weeks actually) Leinster are back in Heineken Cup action tomorrow against Cardiff. Now all the niceties of the pool stages are over and it's pure knock-out rugby from now on. This ramps up the excitement of course, but also the nervousness. Last year Leinster took on Leicester Tigers at this stage and it was an achingly tense match. Leinster weren't at their best but they managed to dog their way through. This year, there hasn't been half as much nervousness amongst fans because Leinster are such raging hot favourites. However, being so strongly fancied can bring dangers of it's own, as we saw in last year's final against Northampton. Leinster's coaches have been bigging up Cardiff all week to keep minds focused and understandably so.
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Leinster Rugby vs Montpellier Herault RC

by Jim O'Connor, 2012-01-20

Last week, Leinster won on the road and once again it wasn't pretty. Glasgow's record in Europe at Firhill is impressive and you can see why. The pitch is narrow, the ground is heavy and Glasgow are very well organised and conditioned. They were a lot cuter at the breakdown this time, slowing down Leinster's ball and they also shut down a lot of the main ball carriers.
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Match Preview: Glasgow Warriors vs Leinster Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2012-01-14

Last week Leinster completed their 'Christmas Schedule' with three wins from three after a somewhat bizarre win in Cardiff. Leinster got off to a blistering start with two tries in ten minutes but spent the rest of the game battling against the Italian referee and the Welsh officials. Marius Metrea lived up to the stereotype of the hometown Italian ref by penalising Leinster relentlessly while turning a blind eye to Cardiff's antics at the breakdown. The Welsh TMO Neil Ballard's decision to award the Cardiff try, despite having no evidence of the ball being touched down, should be enough to ensure he's never trusted with the job again. It's a poor reflection on the league that such a collection of clowns can be entrusted with such a high profile game.
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Match Preview: Leinster Rugby vs Bath Rugby

by Jim O'Connor, 2011-12-16

In a major golf tournament the Saturday is called 'moving day', in that the players who are going to contend move into position and others drop away. The fourth week of the Heineken Cup pool stages is quite similar. By the end of it, everyone has a good idea of who's going to get out of their groups and who can basically concentrate on their domestic competition for the rest of the season.
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