Leinster crashed out of the Heineken Cup when they fell to a 35-13 defeat to London Wasps…
Leinster crashed out of the Heineken Cup when they fell to a disappointing 35-13 defeat to 2004 champions London Wasps in Adams Park on Saturday evening.
Speaking after the game skipper Felipe Contepomi commented: “Wasps were just too good, especially in the second half. We played well in the first half, but we then missed a few tackles and we have to ask questions of ourselves.
“Wasps played a Rugby League type defence, the same as many other Welsh teams in the Magners League. They have some world-class players and that’s why they’re one of the best teams in the competition.
“This competition is very hard to win. Many great teams, like Toulouse, haven’t even made it this far. Our supporters were magnificent throughout the game and we’re disappointed that we couldn’t give them the performance they deserved. We need to pick ourselves up, try to improve week by week, and go on and try our very best to win the Magners League.”
Wasps got off to the perfect start when out-half Alex King slotted home two penalties inside the first 15 minutes. Leinster, cheered on by over 3,000 supporters who made the trip to the High Wycombe, recovered and took the advantage when Chris Whitaker darted clear of the despairing defence after some excellent from Girvan Dempsey who made the initial break.
Contepomi added the points to give Leinster a 7-6 lead. On the stroke of half-time Eoin Reddan bagged the first of his two tries, with King again converting, before a Contepomi penalty in injury time reduced the deficit to 13-10 at the interval.
Leinster needed a positive re-start but any thoughts of an early breakthrough were dealt a blow when Jamie Haskell barrelled over. King added the points before Danny Cipriani edged the hosts into a dominant 25-10 lead.
Reddan would add a late score in the 66th minute as Contepomi kicked another penalty but it was too little too late for the province.
15: Danny Cipriani 14: Josh Lewsey 13: Fraser Waters 12: Dominic Waldouck 11: Tom Voyce 10: Alex King 9: Eoin Reddan
1: Tim Payne 2: Raphael Ibanez 3: Phil Vickery 4: Simon Shaw 5: Tom Palmer 6: Joe Worsley 7: Tom Rees 8: Lawrence Dallaglio CAPTAIN
16: Joe Ward 17: Peter Bracken 18: Dan Leo 19: James Haskell 20: Mark McMillan 21: Ayoola Erinle 22: Mark Van Gisbergen
LEINSTER SCORERS: C. Whitaker (1 try), F. Contepomi (2 penalties, 1 conversion)
WASPS SCORERS: E. Reddan (2 tries), J. Haskell / D. Cipriani (1 try each), A. King (3 penalties, 3 conversions)
15: Girvan Dempsey (Rob Kearney, 68) 14: Shane Horgan 13: Kieran Lewis (Christian Warner, 68) 12: Gordon D’Arcy 11: Denis Hickie 10: Felipe Contepomi CAPTAIN 9: Chris Whitaker
1: Stanley Wright 2: Bernard Jackman (Brian Blaney, 56) 3: Will Green 4: Trevor Hogan (Owen Finegan, 62) 5: Malcolm O’Kelly 6: Stephen Keogh (Cameron Jowitt, 72) 7: Keith Gleeson 8: Jamie Heaslip
REPLACEMENTS NOT USED: Reggie Corrigan, Guy Easterby
REFEREE: Nigel Owens (WRU)