It may have been a season of under-achievement for Leinster but the former European champions made sure of finishing their campaign on a winning note with a five-try victory over Edinburgh at Murrayfield to send the Dubliners into a well-deserved summer break in good spirit.
“We’ve been a little disappointed in how we performed in the league this season. So the guys were positive about finishing on a high note,” said Leinster coach Matt O’Connor
“We knew we had to be good against Edinburgh and thankfully the weather was good so we were able to put on a performance.”
With all the pressure on Edinburgh and none on the Dublin side, Leinster were able to play with an open style and in the event it was their better skills in midfield and their more accurate passing that won them the match.
Impressive for Leinster were outhalf Ian Madigan, who collected the man-of-the-match award after kicking four conversions and a drop goal in addition to orchestrating the attack, and centres, Noel Reid and Colm O'Shea, who were penetrative in midfield, while in the pack skipper Jamie Heaslip made his experience tell at the breakdown.
Leinster were unfortunate to lose secondrow Mike McCarthy after just three minutes with a head knock and the lost his replacement, Tom Denton, as well after he sustained a torn bicep just two minutes later. But despite having to make early adjustments in the pack, Leinster were never under pressure upfront.
For Edinburgh a win would have given them a slender chance of gaining entry to next season’s European Cup but the reality is that the Scottish capital side lack the resources to compete at the ‘super’ level. In the event, they fell short against a Leinster side that played well in patches.
Leinster led 17-10 at the break with tries from Reid from a sublime reverse pass by Sean O'Brien and replacement secondrow Jack Conan from clever play by Madigan and Dave Kearney.
Then after Edinburgh had narrowed the gap with a penalty goal Leinster stretched their lead as Madigan’s long pass gave
room to score in the corner.
A converted try from Edinburgh's Tim Visser and then a penalty from Sam Hidalgo-Clyne briefly put Edinburgh ahead only for Leinster to reassert themselves with a try Jordi Murphy and then a final touchdown by replacement scrum half Luke McGrath to seal the win.