Leinster locked in on Edinburgh

Tue, 01 Jan 2013 12:14
Large joe schmidt p Large briano driscollleinster Large roddygrantedinburgh2

Leinster coach Joe Schmidt says they will not fall into the trap of overlooking struggling Edinburgh ahead of the teams’ Pro12 clash this weekend.

Leinster coach Joe Schmidt says they will not fall into the trap of overlooking struggling Edinburgh ahead of the teams’ Pro12 clash this weekend.

Schmidt’s charges left him pleased with his side's efforts as they ended a three-match winless stretch with a 17-0 shutout of Connacht at the RDS on Saturday as they head into a big month for the province both in the Pro12 and European Cup competitions.

"I was pleased with the effort from what was a relatively young and inexperienced group of players. We defended well playing into the strong breeze in the first half as Connacht put a lot of pressure on us,” he said.  

“It was a great confidence boost to get seven points just before the interval and we put together some positive phases in the last quarter of the game to build a bit of a buffer on the scoreboard.

"Despite the cold wind, the crowd helped spur the players on as always and it was great to be back at the RDS with the really positive support we receive there.

"With other teams in the top half winning this weekend we didn't lose any ground at least, so we're still just outside the play-off qualification spots. It means we've still got plenty of work to do but at least we're close enough to be in the scramble for the semifinals.”

Edinburgh are coming off back-to-back defeats to Glasgow which saw the Warriors lift the 1872 Cup but Schmidt expects nothing less than a gruelling, close content.   

"We know from experience how difficult it is to win over in Edinburgh. A lot of our players have played under Michael [Bradley] at different levels for Connacht, the Wolfhounds or with the Ireland senior squad when he took interim charge a few years back - and all speak highly of him.

"Edinburgh will be keen to get back to winning ways after their narrow defeats to Glasgow over the Christmas period and they showed real character to come back and almost snatch the win last weekend after Glasgow got away to a flying start.

"Games between ourselves and Edinburgh are always tight affairs. We narrowly beat them earlier in the campaign in the RDS (22-16) and it was nip-and-tuck last season over in Murrayfield when we managed to come out on the right side of a contest that see-sawed right up until the finish (28-36).

"They have a big abrasive set of forwards and proven international performers throughout. With a player like Tim Visser in their ranks, who is racing clear at the top of the try-scoring charts again this year, we can't afford any defensive lapses.

“Greig Laidlaw controls the game for them at either scrumhalf or flyhalf and they have a number of very effective ball carriers led by the likes of Dave Denton and Netani Talei.

"With a short six-day turnaround, the focus in the early part of this week is about nursing knocks and reintegrating players back into the group as a number of players haven't had much game time in recent weeks.

"It can be easy to allow your mind to drift because January is shaping up to be a big month for us in the context of the season across both competitions, but we're very much focused on Edinburgh and what is sure to be another stiff test this weekend."

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 15 December 2017
Ulster v Harlequins 19h45 Kingspan Stadium
Sat, 16 December 2017
Montpellier v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Altrad Stadium
Treviso v Scarlets 13h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Leinster v Exeter Chiefs 15h15 Aviva Stadium
Racing Metro v Castres 15h15 Stade Yves-du-Manoir
Bath v Toulon 17h30 Recreation Ground
Sun, 17 December 2017
Wasps v La Rochelle 13h00 Ricoh Arena
Clermont Auvergne v Saracens 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Ospreys v Northampton Saints 15h15 Liberty Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Munster 17h30 Welford Road
RESULT SCORE
Mon, 11 December 2017
Saracens v Clermont Auvergne 14 | 46
Sun, 10 December 2017
Exeter Chiefs v Leinster 8 | 18
Harlequins v Ulster 5 | 17
La Rochelle v Wasps 49 | 29
Sat, 09 December 2017
Munster v Leicester Tigers 33 | 10
Castres v Racing Metro 16 | 13
Northampton Saints v Ospreys 32 | 43
Toulon v Bath 24 | 20
Scarlets v Treviso 33 | 28
Fri, 08 December 2017
Glasgow Warriors v Montpellier 22 | 29
Sun, 03 December 2017
Harlequins v Saracens 20 | 19
Sat, 02 December 2017
Cheetahs v Scarlets 28 | 21
Munster v Ospreys 36 | 10
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 32 | 25
Treviso v Leinster 10 | 36
PRO14
MORE LOGS
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 10 10 0 0 48
Munster 10 7 0 3 36
Cheetahs 10 6 0 4 29
Cardiff Blues 10 4 0 6 19
Connacht 10 3 0 7 18
Zebre 10 3 0 7 16
Ospreys 10 2 0 8 11
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Scarlets 10 8 0 2 40
Leinster 10 8 0 2 37
Ulster 10 7 1 2 35
Edinburgh 10 6 0 4 28
Treviso 10 3 0 7 15
Dragons 10 2 1 7 13
Kings 10 0 0 10 4