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Kearney makes scoring return as Leinster held to Italian draw


Leinster's Jack Conan is is tackled by Joe Carlisle of Treviso.

Leinster's Jack Conan is is tackled by Joe Carlisle of Treviso.


Leinster's Jack Conan is is tackled by Joe Carlisle of Treviso.

Jimmy Gopperth missed a last-minute drop goal as Leinster were held to a 24-24 draw in their Guinness PRO12 match against Treviso on Sunday.

The Italian side, who are still looking for their first win in the competition, held a slender 19-17 lead until the 67th minute when a try by Darragh Fanning and a Gopperth conversion edged Leinster ahead.

However, Davide Giazzon levelled for Treviso when he touched down in the 72nd before full-back Jayden Hayward missed the conversion.

It left the scores level, with Gopperth unable to kick the winning points at the death.

Leinster claimed first blood in the contest when wing Fanning crossed for his first try of the afternoon in the third minute.

Gopperth missed the conversion and 10 minutes later Treviso were ahead after Hayward added the extras to Andrea Pratichetti's try.

Dean Budd crossed for the Italians' second in the 25th minute, and even though Hayward missed the conversion, Treviso took a 12-5 lead.

Dave Kearney cut the gap soon after, though, with the visitors' second try on a day where the fly-halves were struggling to find their range, with Gopperth again missing the extra two points.

Treviso left the field at half-time 12-10 ahead but their advantage did not last long in the second half as Bryan Byrne crossed in the first minute after the break, with Gopperth this time on target.

Hayward missed a penalty at the other end but a try from flanker Marco Barbini got the home side back on level terms before the full-back edged them ahead with a successful conversion.

With the game evenly poised going into the final quarter, it was Fanning who swung the advantage back to Leinster with his second try of the game, which Gopperth converted.

Treviso were not done, with Giazzon's try drawing them level, but Hayward's inconsistent kicking came into play again when he missed the match-winning conversion in the 76th minute.

Gopperth tried in vain to land a decisive drop goal at the other end but with both men struggling, the score remained tied at the full-time whistle.

Online Editors