Leinster 32 v Toulouse 23. 50,073 can’t be mugs

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Magnificent match – physical bravery at crescendo levels. Rugby at its rawest. Toulouse – aristocratic magnificent – Cedric Heymans, Vincent Clerc, Maxime Medard, William Servat, Pat Albacete from the Argies, Thierry Dusautoir, Yannick Nyanga, Poitrenaud, Picomoles David Skrela and the rest. Toulouse – maybe the greatest rugby institution in Europe. I am in awe of Toulouse. Who could forget Pierre Villepreux?

However, what of this phenomenal institution billowing before our eyes? I met the great dr Tom Coghlan this afternoon in Lansdowne. He played for Clontarf and Leinster in the 1960s. I remember himself and Wigs Mulcahy in the second row against the All Blacks in about 1966. Tom reminisced about the crowd then about 25,000 against New Zealand and about Wanderers inducing and persuading the Clontarf talent to move to Merrion Road form caps – Mick FitzPatrick, Frank Ennis, Robbie McGrath (?Emmet O’Rafferty). Mick Dawson and the Leinster Branch have done a magnificent job. Inspired signings. – BOD – the greatest Irish field sportman of all time in my opinion. Constantly reinvents himself. We are observing and witnessing a phenomenon in our midst. Filipe Contepomi, Matt Williams, Michael Cheika, Isa Nacewa, David Holwell, Joe Schmidt, Nathan Hines, Rick Strauss and many more. The Academy System is awesome. A massive conveyor belt of unrelenting talent. It is obvious that the Irish establishment is deeply embedded in rugby in the Dublin region which is the reason for its comprehensive development in all areas.Money and talent – what a combination!

The match today was sensation in its intensity. How anyone could be man of the match I just don’t know. Obviously I have great liking and respect for Toulouse. To watch Leinster overcome them with a largely Irish team is a source of huge pride of place. Three of the starting 15 are foreign born.
The intensite was greater than many test matches. This team will be wrecked physically this week.

In the pictures – the scoreboard and clock winds down aginisingly slowly. Cllr Ray McAdam shows how rugby is getting into Cavan GAA heads as well and Jacko smiling when Jonny Sexton gets another penalty in his 100% performance. Micky Quinn and Jacko after the match in Lansdowne