Rory O’Loughlin’s first-minute try from a kick over the top by Ross Byrne set them on their way in this Guinness PRO12 clash, but they had to withstand periods of sustained Treviso pressure in particular during a first half in which the home side will feel they could have got more from.
O’Loughlin’s effort aside, Leinster had to absorb plenty of Treviso pressure in the opening quarter as the home side dominated possession and territory, and but for excellent defensive work by Zane Kirchner and Jamison Gibson-Park in particular, they would have drawn level.
Indeed they went as close as possible in the 22nd minute when outhalf Ross Byrne had to nail a one-on-one tackle on Andrea Pratichetti who had the try-line in his sights. Nail it he did to force a huge turnover, which Jack Conan then gathered to clear the danger with his right boot.
It was the returning Dave Kearney and not a Treviso player that would cross the try line next.
Making his first appearance since his ankle injury in October, Kearney followed up a couple of early touches with a brace of tries after 24 and 27 minutes – his opening score coming very much against the run of play.
As Treviso attempted to go through the phases in midfield, blind side flanker Dominic Ryan pounced on a loose ball to send Ian Nagle away. The heavily-involved Jamison Gibson Park moved the ball wide for Kearney to make it over in the left corner.
Kearney was certainly back with a bang, linking well with O’Loughlin moments later to ghost through a gap and complete his quick-fire double – with Byrne expertly banging over both conversions for a 100% first half tally.
Treviso, who were missing 11 internationals, finally got the score their first half efforts deserved and responded with a converted effort from lock Teofilo Paulo five minutes before half-time, reducing the arrears to 21-7.
After a sloppy start to the second half, Leinster’s solid scrum, led by stand-in captain Richardt Strauss, with Peter Dooley and Michael Bent either side, provided the platform for the bonus point try in the 50th minute as quick ball was shifted across the back-line for winger Adam Byrne to clinically finish in the right corner for his ninth try of the season. Ross Byrne’s sublime conversion left Leinster 7-28 to the good.
Byrne’s opposite number Andrea Pratichetti hit back with a try of his own four minutes later, cutting Leinster’s lead to 28-14 with former Leinster player Ian McKinley converting once again. However any hope of a late home fight back was put to bed with a Joey Carbery touchdown on his return from injury.
The hosts had Francesco Minto sin-binned in the 69th minute and Leinster made them pay, a robust maul seeing replacement hooker Byrne touch down. Ross Byrne coolly converted to top off his 10-point contribution from the tee.
The maximum return keeps third-placed Leinster hot on the heels of the Ospreys – three points separate the sides in the play-off zone – ahead of next Friday’s encounter with Edinburgh at the RDS (kick-off 7.35pm).
Leinster Rugby return to the RDS Arena this Friday to face Edinburgh (KO 7.35pm). Tickets are on sale now from €20/10.