It was an entertaining match at Rifle Park this evening with Leinster A putting in a very powerful second half performance to claim a well deserved 10-35 victory over Ulster A.
The home side, who are sponsored by CD Group, will be disappointed as they competed strongly in the first half and only trailed by a single point at halftime.
The game started in brisk fashion with the strong Leinster pack driving play deep into the Ulster 22, where the home backs strayed offside. Ciaran Frawley, a late replacement in the starting lineup for Cathal Marsh stepped up to convert for a 0-3 lead in the 5th minute.
Frawley doubled the advantage four minutes later after Ulster failed to release the player on the ground, but Brett Herron replied to reduce the deficit to 3-6.
The home side began to settle into the game, taking play through a number of phases before Herron found the corner with a well positioned kick. The Leinster lineout was stolen by Pete Browne who then drove hard for the line and was stopped short. Shanahan supplied the ball to Stuart McCloskey at pace and the big centre had enough strength to make the line. Herron added the extras to take the home side into the lead 10-6.
As the first half drew to a close, Leinster started to build momentum and after a number of phases deep in the Ulster 22, quick hands from the backs put Hugo Keenan clear to dive in at the corner. Frawley failed to convert to leave the visitors a single point clear 10-11 at the interval.
Sean Cronin made a welcome return to action in the second half and he wasted no time in adding to the visitors' tally when he was on the end of a driving maul to score his side's second try. The conversion was missed so the score read 10-16.
Within minutes the Leinster men struck again. This time Barry Daly started the move with a counter-attack from deep in his own territory, Louis Ludik did well to bring his run to a halt, but Daly's off-load found Peadar Timmins and the skipper powered his way past a number of despairing tackle to score in the corner. This time Frawley was on target from the tee, taking his side 10-23 clear.
Ulster found it difficult to get back into the game and simply turned over too much possession. In the 60th minute they lost ball at the back of a lineout and quick hands across the Leinster backline sent Daly clear to score try number four. Frawley added the extras for a 10-30 lead.
The final score of the game came in the last minute when Timmins turned over Ulster ball to start the attack. Quick thinking from the visitors' midfield exploited a dogleg in the Ulster defensive line, sending Daly through to score his second try. The conversion was missed to leave the final score 10-35 to Leinster A.