Champions Cup: Leinster run in nine tries as they nil Gloucester while Sharks claim narrow win at Bordeaux-Begles

Leinster ran in nine tries as they eased past a weakened Gloucester side in their Champions Cup clash at the RDS Arena on Friday.

Tries from James Lowe (2), Josh van der Flier, Ronan Kelleher (2), James Ryan, Luke McGrath, Jordan Larmour and Caelan Doris saw the hosts cruise.

Ross Byrne added five conversions with replacement Johnny Sexton another as Leinster dominated from the outset against a second-string Gloucester.

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George Skivington’s squad rotation – only Lloyd Evans and Alex Hearle were retained as starters from their comeback victory over Bordeaux-Begles – saw him juggle his resources ahead of Gloucester’s Premiership trip to Leicester.

Albert Tuisue and Giorgi Kveseladze were both prominent early on for the Cherry and Whites, but the hosts put a scrappy start behind them with a 12th-minute try.

Heineken star-of-the-match Doris stole possession from Ben Meehan before lobbing a pass out for Lowe to dart over in the left corner. Byrne’s conversion attempt hit the post.

A lineout maul, well marshalled by Ross Molony, propelled Van der Flier over for a 12-point lead, and a similar drive saw Kelleher get around the corner for an unconverted 24th-minute effort.

Arthur Clark, who impressed at lineout time, became Gloucester’s third casualty of the first half, yet the visitors were relieved when a Kelleher try was ruled out – McGrath was inside the five-metre line when receiving the throw.

There was no way Leinster would allow the first half to end on that poor note. Walker’s yellow for head contact with Van der Flier led to a series of pick and drives, Ryan duly burrowing over for seven more points.

Kelleher broke off another maul to touch down past the 40-minute mark, and a foot in touch narrowly denied a leaping Lowe on the resumption.

McGrath then sidestepped inside Billy Twelvetrees and Jack Clement for try number six, Gloucester also losing prop Ciaran Knight to the bin.

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Doris provided his second assist for Lowe to cross in 54th minute. Leinster had the luxury of sending on Sexton and Jamison Gibson-Park for the final quarter.

Lloyd Evans was crowed out for a rare Gloucester opportunity in the left corner, and Dan Sheehan’s excellent one-handed offload sent Larmour over with five minutes to go.

Jake Morris missed out on a consolation try, Sexton’s tackle keeping the visitors scoreless before he converted Doris’ closer from another dominant Leinster maul.

Sharks go two from two with win at Bordeaux

Elsewhere, the Sharks made it two victories out of two in the competition as they edged out Bordeaux-Begles, winning 19-16 on the road in their game.

The South African franchise were marginal underdogs heading into the clash, despite debuting with a strong win against Harlequins, but once again showed they mean business as they successfully overturned a half-time deficit.

The French side were 13-9 ahead at the interval, with Renato Giammarioli going over for try after just seven minutes.

Jules Gimbert converted and added a couple of penalties as the hosts cashed in on some errors, but nine points off the boot of Curwin Bosch, including a drop goal, kept things tight.

The game broke open at the start of the second period, Werner Kok smartly gathering Boeta Chamberlain’s offload to touch down from close-range and give his side a lead they never surrendered.

Bosch put over the extras and slotted two of his next three penalties, with Zack Holmes replying for Bordeaux.

There was a lengthy delay after Madosh Tambwe suffered an unintentional collision with Kok late on, but when play resumed the Sharks were able to settle in and protect their advantage.