This was divided up into three periods, the first two stretching to 30 minutes each, the last to 25 minutes.

The Blues were victims of their own naivety in the first section as they were caught time and again by failing to recognise where the danger was coming from as Sale cut them for four tries into the left corner.

Things improved in the second period as Leinster were able to create tries for second row Fion Gilbert, prop Marcus Hannon and out-half Patrick McKenzie, who made two out of three conversions to reduce the gap to 31-19 after an hour.

From there, the temptation for Leinster to push the pace and risk ratio to make up the 12-point deficit (31-19) got them into trouble.

Sale’s work at the breakdown, especially at counter-rucking, sealed a 77th minute penalty and was the seed for their last minute seven-pointer.

Considering this was Leinster’s first of four hit outs ahead of the Interprovincial Series, there was a lot to like about this competitive encounter.


Thomas Jones (North Kildare); Mathew Jungman (Seapoint), Mikey McGiff (Clontarf), Dermot Egan (Tullamore), Thomas McBrien (Skerries); Adam Nealon (DLSP), Jack Usher (Suttonians); Sean O’Rourke (Athy), Michael Fitzpatrick (Clontarf), Mike Power (Clontarf), Tadgh Butler (Kilkenny), Sam Porter (Wicklow), Niall Derham (Mullingar), Rob Murphy (Gorey), Patrick Kiernan (Greystones).

Dermot Egan; Josh O’Connor (Wexford), Luis Faria (Wanderers), Karl Martin (Boyne); Joe Mulholland (Ardee); Patrick McKenzie (Wicklow), Shane Murphy (Skerries); Marcus Hannon (Clane), Barry Ryan (Wexford), Charlie Ward (Tullow), Sam Porter, Fion Gilbert (Clontarf), Brian Deeney (Wexford), Luke Thompson (Wicklow), Tadgh Butler.


Thomas Jones; Mathew Jungman, Josh O’Connor, Luis Faria, Joe Mulholland; Patrick McKenzie, Shane Murphy; Mike Power, Mark Nicholson (Wicklow), Jordan Kelly (Enniscorthy), Fion Gilbert, Brian Deeney, Rob Murphy, Like Thompson, David Murphy (Blackrock).