Friendly Rivalry

Leinster's cavalry overpower Ulster as Schmidt watches on

Ireland’s head coach watched a seven-try friendly with both sides using more than 30 players during the 80 minutes.

Ulster 21

Leinster 24

JOE SCHMIDT WAS joined by his assistant coach Les Kiss and Richie Murphy at Kingspan Stadium tonight and the trio witnessed a second half comeback from Leinster’s replacements that earned a friendly victory over Ulster.

Joe Schmidt with Richie Murphy and Les Kiss Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

Leinster took an early lead through a try from winger Adam Byrne. However, Ulster (somewhat confusingly playing in blue while Leinster wore white) were still well in touch and Paul Marshall added to a bright performance with a long range try after quick-tapping a penalty on 32 minutes.

Ian Humphreys kicked the conversion to give Ulster the lead and he was soon lining up another after Luke Marshall finished off a move out wide.

Both sides made a raft of changes to their starting line-ups after entering the changing rooms at 14- 5.

Darren Cave and Adam Byrne Adam Byrne gets clear of Darren Cave. Ryan Byrne / INPHO Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

For Leinster, the addition of the likes of Jack Conan, Dan Leavy, Garry Ringrose and Isa Nacewa certainly paid dividends as the visitors powered to 19 unanswered points in 15 minutes.

Nacewa, running from fullback, got on the board with two conversions after Steve Crosbie failed to add the extras to Conan’s touchdown just two minutes after the restart.

Luke Marshall is tackled by Tony Ryan Luke Marshall makes a carry. Presseye / Darren Kidd/INPHO Presseye / Darren Kidd/INPHO / Darren Kidd/INPHO

Leavy claimed Leinster’s third try of the evening to pull ahead at 14 – 17 on 49 minutes and that gave newly appointed head coach Leo Cullen the license to call his 15th starter ashore to allow Ross Byrne take the reins before Bryan Byrne grounded Leinster’s fourth.

10 points adrift, Ulster’s replacements couldn’t quite muster the second wind their starters provided. The game descended into a scrappy contest for the final quarter and Leinster’s defence ensured the hosts were unable to close the 10-point gap until after the clock went red. A late try from Sam Arnold proved just a consolation as the full-time whistle blew with Leinster sitting on a three-point cushion.


15. Jack Owens
14. Craig Gilroy
13. Darren Cave
12. Luke Marshall
11. Peter Nelson
10. Ian Humphreys
9. Paul Marshall

1. Ruairidh Murphy
2. Rob Herring (captain)
3. Wiehan Herbst
4. Peter Brown
5. Franco van der Merwe
6. Clive Ross
7. Sean Reidy
8. Robbie Diack


Andrew Warwick
John Andrew
Ricky Lutton
Bronson Ross
Alan O’Connor
Dan Tuohy
Conor Joyce
Frankie Taggart
Willie Faloon
Stephen Mullholland
Paul Rowley
David Shanahan
Sam Windsor
Jacob Stockdale
Stuart McCloskey
Sam Arnold
Louis Ludik
Mark Best


15. Billy Dardis
14. Darragh Fanning
13. Ben Te’o
12. Noel Reid
11. Adam Byrne
10. Cathal Marsh
9. Luke McGrath

1. Peter Dooley
2. James Tracy
3. Jamie Hagan
4. Tadhg Beirne
5. Tom Denton
6. Dominic Ryan (captain)
7. Josh van der Flier
8. Tony Ryan


Ed Byrne
Bryan Byrne
Royce Burke-Flynn
Ross Molony
Mike McCarthy
Gav Thornbury
Peadar Timmins
Dan leavy
Jack Conan
Nick McCarthy
Steve Crosbie
Ross Byrne
Michael McGrath
Collie O’Shea
Garry Ringrose
Isa Nacewa

Joe Schmidt will be keeping a close eye on ‘Le Crunch’ part deux tomorrow

Narbonne fans ensure Jerry Collins will not be easily forgotten

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.