Defending Magners League champions Leinster earned an excellent 21-13 victory over Ulster on Saturday night…Michael Cheika Post Match Reaction…

Speaking after the game, Leinster Coach Michael Cheika said: “I was pleased with the match over the whole 80 minutes. We made one mistake, but bar that we managed the game ok. We probably could have got a bit more pace on to the ball at times and we were a bit static when we received the ball, but we tried doing a few things different and it was a step in that direction.

“Ravenhill is a very difficult place to come and play and Ulster are an improved side. We have copped a lot of flak and I’m sure we’ll cop some more again. Maybe next week? Who knows? That seems to be the way everyone wants it to work. We knew that tonight was always going to be a tough match for us and there was that extra bit of pressure.

“But we kept our composure ok, (we) know we could have done a few things better, but we’re happy to get the win up here.” 

Felipe Contepomi kicked the visitors into an early 3-0 lead with a penalty before Darren Cave scythed through the Leinster rearguard to touch down, with Ian Humphreys adding the points after 25 minutes.

Ulster held on to a 7-3 half-time lead, before Leinster struck back through Man of the Match Rocky Elsom. The Australian capitalised on an excellent Girvan Dempsey burst in a move involving Sean O’Brien to touch down in the corner, which Contepomi converted.

Dempsey was forced off the field with an ankle knock and was replaced by Simon Keogh who continued his fine run of recent form with another busy display. Humphreys kicked penalties on 52 and 66 minutes, before Keogh snuck in the corner after some clever play from D’Arcy and Contepomi in the 70th minute.

Another replacement, Stephen Keogh, fought hard at the breakdown and earned his side a penalty five minutes later, which Contepomi slotted home, to stretch the advantage to eight points.

ULSTER SCORERS: D. Cave (1 try), I. Humphreys (2 penalties, 1 conversion)

LEINSTER SCORERS: R. Elsom / Simon Keogh (1 try each), F. Contepomi (3 penalties, 1 conversion)

ULSTER: Bryn Cunningham, Timoci Nagusa, Darren Cave, Paddy Wallace, Andrew Trimble, Ian Humphreys, Isaac Boss; Justin Fitzpatrick, Rory Best CAPTAIN, Brendon Botha, Ed O’Donoghue, Matt McCullough, Stephen Ferris David Pollock, Robbie Diack

REPLACEMENTS: Nigel Brady, Tom Court, Thomas Anderson, Kieron Dawson, Paul Marshall, Paul Steinmetz, Clinton Schifcofske


15: Girvan Dempsey (Simon Keogh, 46)
14: Gordon D’Arcy
13: Luke Fitzgerald
12: Felipe Contepomi
11: Rob Kearney
10: Isa Nacewa
9: Chris Whitaker CAPTAIN (Chris Keane, 80)

1: Cian Healy
2: John Fogarty (Brian Blaney, 77)
3: Stan Wright (Ronan McCormack, 41)
4: Trevor Hogan (Malcolm O’Kelly, 53)
5: Devin Toner
6: Rocky Elsom (Stephen Keogh, 62)
7: Sean O’Brien
8: Jamie Heaslip

REPLACEMENTS NOT USED: Chris Keane, Jonathan Sexton

REFEREE: George Clancy (IRFU), ASSISTANT REFEREES: P. Fitzgibbon and L. Colgan (IRFU), TMO: Trevor Collins (IRFU)