Leinster pay penalty in Glasgow
Glasgow 12 Leinster 6
Connacht can sleep easily this weekend after Leinster failed to knock the Westerners off their top perch in the Guinness Pro12 last night at Scotstoun with defeat to Glasgow in a match that produced not a single try.
Leinster showed muscularity in the forward approach but their use of the ball lacked finesse and in the event their attempts at playing attacking rugby were easy prey to a fast-engaging Glasgow defence.
The visitors looked purposeful in the opening exchanges and took an early lead with a penalty goal by Isa Nacewa after only two minutes of play but Glasgow responded with a series of attacks in their opponents' 22 that culminated in a penalty by out-half Rory Clegg, playing in his first match since returning to the Scottish side.
The kicking duel continued with a second successive penalty by Clegg, the Glasgow advantage neutralised by a second success for Nacewa. Then after Leinster had threatened with a chip and chase by Dave Kearney the visitors had a chance to take an interval lead only for Nacewa to slice a relatively simple kick at goal leaving the two sides level going into the break.
Glasgow's furious pace at the start of the second half put immense pressure on the Leinster defence and inevitably the Warriors' momentum ended with a penalty award and a third goal for Clegg giving Glasgow a 9-6 advantage.
Leinster looked more purposeful from the restart but were undone by a couple of turnovers that gave Glasgow respite and the chance to return to attacking rugby. As the pattern of the game fluctuated, Glasgow were rewarded with another penalty and again Clegg delivered the points.
Minutes later when Leinster won a penalty they opted to run the ball but Glasgow were given another reprieve when referee George Clancy judged that the visitors had not released after the tackle.
Leinster however were given a further chance to rescue the game from a penalty lineout, but once again the visitors' attacking efforts were ruined by an untimely turnover.
But when Isaac Boss, who had replaced Luke McGrath, was tackled high, Leinster were handed another lifeline with a penalty-created line-out only for the visitors to transgress at the breakdown allowing Glasgow to kick long for touch, leaving Leinster helplessly watching the clock tick down to full-time and to defeat.
Glasgow - P Murchie (A Price 40); L Jones, M Bennett, S Johnson (N Grigg 33), R Hughes (G Bryce 11); R Clegg, G Hart G Reid (J Yanuyanutawa 62), F Brown, S Puafisi (Z Fagerson 56), G Peterson, L Nakarawa, J Eddie (T Holmes 46), S Favaro (J Malcolm 62), A Ashe (S Cummings 56)
Leinster - Z Kirchner; I Nacewa, G Ringrose (N Reid 77), B Te'o, D Kearney; C Marsh (J Carberry 77), L McGrath (I Boss 73); P Dooley (J Loughman 73), J Tracy, T Furlong (M Bent 73), M Kearney (P Timmins 65), H Triggs (R Molony 55), D Ryan, D Leavy, J Murphy.
Ref - G Clancy (IRFU)