Sunday 22 January 2017

McKinley steps up to plate for Leinster


Ruaidhri O'Connor at the RDS

Published 26/02/2011 | 05:00

NO bonus point, but a satisfying return to winning ways for Leinster last night as Ian McKinley announced himself as a serious prospect at fly-half and Joe Schmidt's side moved up to second.

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The St Mary's pivot scored one of his side's tries, made another, kicked well and generally took the right option throughout this dismissal of a Treviso side who battled gamely, but never recovered from not taking their first-half chances.

The first period was littered with silly errors and the sound of the referee Neil Hennessy's whistle. As a result, there was precious little flow and Leinster were given a flattering advantage by virtue of the fact their kicker Isa Nacewa was more accurate than his counterpart Willem de Waal as he kicked them into a 9-0 lead.

That was extended by Dave Kearney's try, created by 21-year-old McKinley. Devin Toner won clean line-out ball and tapped down to Isaac Boss. He hit the out-half who stepped outside De Waal's grasp, drew Michele Sepe and fed Kearney, who had the composure to round Joe Maddock on the inside and touch down under the posts.

Nacewa added the conversion and the lead might have been further extended when Boss made a searing break from his own five-metre line and into the Treviso half, but he didn't spot Andrew Conway on his outside and the move came to nothing.

Leinster weren't to have it all their own way as the Italians got some reward for their endeavours with a try. They had already gone close twice, so when Gonzalo Padro crashed over in the corner they finally got off the mark and went in 16-5 behind at the interval.

But it didn't take Leinster long to reassert their dominance on the scoreboard and this time in serious style.

Dominic Ryan made a break out of his 22, went to ground and the hosts rucked over. Boss moved the ball out to Nacewa, who fed Kearney and he put McKinley through for his first try for his province.

Treviso were then reduced to 14 men when Corniel van Zyl was binned for killing the ball, but Leinster couldn't make their advantage pay and never looked like grabbing a bonus point. Conway finally got over from Niall Morris' flick late on, but it was too late to go looking for a fourth.

LEINSTER -- I Nacewa (Capt); A Conway, E O'Malley, E Sheridan (P O'Donohoe 60), D Kearney; I McKinley (I Madigan 60), I Boss (N Morris 80); H van der Merwe (J McGrath 64), R Strauss (J Harris-Wright 74), S Wright (C Newland h-t); E O'Donoghue (P Ryan 61), D Toner; K McLaughlin, D Ryan, S Keogh (R Ruddock 37).

TREVISO -- J Maddock; M Sepe, E Galon, A Vilk, B de Jagert; W de Waal (A Marcato 60), L Nitoglia; M Rizzon (P Di Santo 52), E Ceccato (F Sbraglini 52), IF Rouyet (M Muccignat 62); A Pavanello, C Van Zyl; B Vermaak, G Padro (E Pavanello 52), M Filipucci.

REF -- N Hennessy (Wales).

Irish Independent

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