Leinster find their form against Bath

Zane Kirchner is tackled by Chris Cook of Bath

Leinster finally found their game in the European Rugby Champions Cup and beat Bath 25-11 at the RDS Arena in Ireland.

Both teams could only manage to score one try each and the difference on the scoreboard was Ian Madigan’s boot as he kicked six penalties compared to George Ford and Rhys Priestland’s two.

Leinster have now played five European Rugby Champions Cup European matches this season and this was their first victory and had already been eliminated.

As for Bath the result effectively rules them out of contention for the knock out stages as they failed to earn a point in the standings and now languish in third place in Pool 5 on 9 points.

Ian Madigan kicked 20 points while Sean Cronin claimed a second-half try that settled a gripping tie at the RDS Showground.

With nothing more than pride to play for, this victory ended Leinster’s worst run in the Champions Cup of five successive defeats.

Leroy Houston had earlier crossed to give Bath a glimmer of hope earlier in the second half.

But this defeat, just six days after pushing holders Toulon to the limit in France, ended any hope of progressing to the quarter-finals for a second year in a row.

Madigan and George Ford traded penalties though Leinster centre Garry Ringrose proved the game’s most threatening player.

His surge almost saw James Tracy over the line but the hooker was ruled just short.

Madigan kicked two more penalties, the second after Bath lock Dominic Day was binned for obstruction.

Houston thought he had given Bath a foothold following the speed and vision of Jonathan Joseph from a counter-attack but was beaten to the touch-down by the finger-tips of Dave Kearney.

Leinster began the second half at full tilt as Ringrose was twice involved in a length of the field attack that was only halted when Ford hauled down Nacewa five metres from the line.

However Madigan still nudged Leinster 15-3 ahead early in the second half before Houston spear-headed a driving maul to score on 60 minutes.

However Ford missed the conversion and a mistake from the re-start ended with Cronin scurrying over unopposed to settle the tie despite late kicks from Madigan and Rhys Priestland.

Ross Molony was named European Rugby Champions Cup man of the match.

Final Score Leinster 25 (12) Bath 11 (3)


Tries – Cronin
Pen – Madigan (6)
Con – Madigan
Drop –

Tries – Houston
Pen – Ford, Priestland
Con –
Drop –

Match Officials
Referee: Pascal Gauzere (France),
Assistant ref: Maxime Chalon (France),
Assistant ref: Jean-Luc Rebollal (France),
TMO: Eric Gonthier (France),
Citing Commissioner: Alberto Recaldini (Italy)


Leinster Rugby:

Zane Kirchner; Isa Nacewa (c), Garry Ringrose, Ben Te’o, Dave Kearney; Ian Madigan, Luke McGrath; Peter Dooley, James Tracy, Tadhg Furlong, Ross Molony, Mike McCarthy, Rhys Ruddock, Josh Van Der Flier, Jordi Murphy

Replacements: Sean Cronin, Jack McGrath, Martin Moore, Tom Denton, Sean O’Brien, Eoin Reddan, Johnny Sexton, Noel Reid

Bath Rugby:

Anthony Watson; Semesa Rokoduguni, Jonathan Joseph, Kyle Eastmond, Matt Banahan; George Ford, Chris Cook; Max Lahiff, Rob Webber, David Wilson, Stuart Hooper (c), Dom Day, Matt Garvey, Francois Louw, Leroy Houston

Replacements: Ross Batty, Nick Auterac, Henry Thomas, Charlie Ewels, David Denton, Jonathan Evans, Rhys Priestland, Tom Homer.

With thanks to EPCRugby

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