Leinster fell to a late Anthony Lagardere penalty to lose 18-15 to Castres Olympique in Friday night’s Heineken Cup Pool 2 encounter in the Stade Pierre Antoine…Michael Cheika Post Match Reaction…
Speaking after the game a disappointed Michael Cheika commented: “We made too many mistakes – we left ourselves vulnerable to be penalised and that put us on the back foot. And we incurred the wrath of the referee too many times. We got beaten at the ruck.
“I don’t think that we’re doing the basics hard enough and fast enough. We had a lot of changes through injuries obviously but that shouldn’t make that much difference.
“It’s important that we bring our best game when it comes to European football and we didn’t do that. We didn’t bring our discipline either.”
Leinster struck early on a bitterly cold evening through the excellent Girvan Dempsey after four minutes when he capitalised on an excellent kick from Brian O’Driscoll. Jonathan Sexton added the conversion and the young out-half was on hand on the half hour mark to crash over after an impressive move involving Shane Jennings and Simon Keogh.
Heineken Man of the Match Lagardere, meanwhile, had slotted home three penalties to reduce Leinster’s lead to 12-9 at the interval.
Leinster started the second half with great purpose and substitute Felipe Contepomi struck a 58th minute penalty, before three more penalties from the French fly-half helped Castres to an 18-15 lead which they held on to, with Leinster gaining a losing bonus point.
CASTRES SCORERS: A. Lagardere (6 penalties)
LEINSTER SCORERS: J. Sexton (1 try, 1 conversion), G. Dempsey (1 try), F. Contepomi (1 penalty)
CASTRES OLYMPIQUE: T Bouquié; C Sika, S Kefu, L Mazars; P Christophers; A Lagardere, S Tillous-Borde, G Lensing, A Giorgadze, D Saayman, J Tekori, L Nallet CAPTAIN, L Tomiki, C Masoe, F Faure
REPLACEMENTS: M Bonello, L Ducalcon, R Capo Ortega, K Kulimen, K Senio, T Sanchou, M Bourret
15: Girvan Dempsey
14: Simon Keogh (Isa Nacewa, 71)
13: Brian O’Driscoll
12: Luke Fitzgerald
11: Rob Kearney
10: Jonathan Sexton (Felipe Contepomi, half-time)
9: Chris Whitaker CAPTAIN
1: Cian Healy
2: Bernard Jackman (Brian Blaney, 61-65)
3: Stan Wright
4: Devin Toner
5: Malcolm O’Kelly
6: Rocky Elsom
7: Shane Jennings
8: Jamie Heaslip
REPLACEMENTS NOT USED: Ronan McCormack, Trevor Hogan, Sean O’Brien, Chris Keane
REFEREE: Dave Pearson (RFU), ASSISTANT REFEREES: Ashley Rowden (RFU), Stuart Terheege (RFU), TMO: David Matthews