Independent.ie readers have chosen the greatest Leinster team of the professional era - who makes the cut?
Published 20/04/2015 | 19:29
More than 20,000 votes were submitted by Independent.ie readers and we can now reveal the 15 players that have been voted in Leinster's greatest team of the professional era.
Last week we asked readers to make their selections and 20,408 votes later the team chosen is a formidable one.
While some players dominated voting in their respective positions (Brian O'Driscoll, Gordon D'Arcy and Cian Healy), there was serious competition on the wings, in the second row and for the number two jersey..
Here is the team as selected by our readers.
15. Rob Kearney
Girvan Dempsey was an incredible servant to the province, but the Louth man claimed more than three-quarters of the vote.
14. Shane Horgan
Only six percent separated the Irish winger with the ultra-consistent Isa Nacewa for the right wing slot.
13. Brian O'Driscoll
The only surprise was that the three-time Heineken Cup winner only received 98pc of the vote.
12. Gordon D'Arcy
One of the most complete midfield partnerships to grace the professional game, D'Arcy was a shoe-in to partner O'Driscoll.
11. Denis Hickie
With 84pc of the votes the speed merchant was well ahead of Luke Fitzgerald for the number 11 jersey.
10. Jonathan Sexton
Felipe Contepomi will always hold a place in Leinster hearts, but he was no match in the poll for the returning Jonathan Sexton.
9. Eoin Reddan
He didn't start in the Champions Cup semi-final defeat to Toulon, but 76pc of readers feel Limerick-born Reddan has been the best number nine over the past 20 years.
1. Cian Healy
The powerhouse of a prop claimed 92pc of the public vote.
2. Shane Byrne
One of the most competitive selection calls, the hooker finished ahead of Sean Cronin and Richardt Strauss.
3. Mike Ross
Stan Wright made his mark during his time at Donnybrook, but Mike Ross has been the cornerstone of both the Ireland and Leinster scrum for some time.
4. Leo Cullen
The current Leinster forwards coach edged past Malcolm O'Kelly and Nathan Hines to take the number four jersey.
5. Brad Thorn
Another one of the foreign import success stories. The fearsome lock mad e a huge impression on his team-mates, supporters and most importantly, his opponents.
6. Rocky Elsom
The Australian only had one year with Leinster, but what a year it was. Eric Miller finished second with six percent of the votes to illustrate how highly thought of the flanker was during the 2008/09 season.
7. Sean O'Brien
The Tullow Tank, when fit and available, has been one of the province's star performers over the past three or four years. A bruising and versatile backrower.
8. Jamie Heaslip
Victor Costello served the number eight jersey with distinction but Jamie Heaslip has arguably been the most consistent Irish rugby player over the past decade. Rarely injured and rarely fails to deliver.