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Edinburgh 16-27 Leinster

Edinburgh (6) 16
Try: penalty Con: Paterson Pens: Godman, Paterson 2

Leinster (24) 27
Try: Elsom, O'Driscoll, Contepomi, Horgan Con: Contepomi 2 Pens: Contepomi

By Andy Campbell

Chris Paterson and Brian O'Driscoll
Edinburgh's Paterson is tackled by O'Driscoll at Murrayfield

Leinster opened their Heineken Cup Pool Two campaign with a bonus point win over Edinburgh at Murrayfield.

Rocky Elsom, Brian O'Driscoll, Felipe Contepomi and Shane Horgan all ran in tries as the visitors built up a commanding 24-6 half-time lead.

A penalty try at the start of the second half brought Edinburgh back into the match.

But Leinster held firm to see out the win with Contepomi taking his tally to 12 with a penalty.

Having won only one competitive match so far this season, Edinburgh were desperate to find some form.

Leinster had lost on their previous seven visits to Scotland but had recorded a handsome 52-6 home win over Andy Robinson's side in the Magners League in September.

Stand-off Phil Godman kicked the home side into the lead on 15 minutes after Shane Jennings had been penalised for killing the ball.

But Leinster soon took the lead when Girvan Dempsey won turnover ball to allow flanker Elsom to evade three tackles and race through for the opening try. Contepomi added the conversion.

After Edinburgh had survived a powerful run by Jamie Heaslip, the visitors extended their lead with a controversial second try.

Contempomi's pass found O'Driscoll, who crossed the line with ease but there appeared to have been a forward pass earlier in the move. Contepomi converted once again.

Chris Paterson, playing at full-back, uncharacteristically missed a penalty after 28 minutes as the Murrayfield side struggled to claw back ground before half-time.

O'Driscoll showed quick feet and superb awareness before sending Contepomi clear for Leinster's third try but on this occasion the Argentine missed the conversion.

Within seconds of the restart, Leinster crossed the line again after Heaslip and Dempsey combined in the counter-attack to release wing Shane Horgan, who touched down in the corner.

Referee Rob Debney consulted the video referee before awarding the try and Contepomi was again off target with the conversion attempt.

Paterson reduced the arrears shortly before half-time with a penalty.

Edinburgh started well in the second half and were awarded a penalty try on 50 minutes.

Leinster shackled Jim Hamilton's run towards the try-line but Edinburgh recycled the ball well and scum-half Mike Blair's pass was intercepted by the offside Contepomi.

The Leinster stand-off was sin-binned before Paterson converted.

After Rob Kearney had missed a penalty for Leinster, Edinburgh centre Hugo Southwell claimed for another penalty try when his pass was knocked-on by scrum-half Chris Whitaker, who was offside.

Instead, referee Debney awarded a penalty, from which Paterson kicked another three points.

Edinburgh's Matt Mustchin was sin-binned for a late tackle and Contepomi got his first penalty of the day to secure Leinster's win.

Edinburgh coach Andy Robinson:
"It's very disappointing. We certainly have to understand how to tackle. The first-half tackles that we missed were poor.

"Leinster hadn't really created anything, they just broke our line and scored four tries just from unstructured play. Credit to them for their support play.

"We have to understand that you've got to start well and from there, it's a basis to go and win a game.

"Too often we say, 'if only this or if only that.' We can't keep doing that. It's not good enough."

Edinburgh: C Paterson, M Robertson, H Southwell, N De Luca, S Webster, P Godman, M Blair (capt), A Jacobsen,R Ford, G Cross, M Mustchin, J Hamilton, S Newlands, A MacDonald, A Hogg.
Replacements: A Kelly, G Kerr, B Gissing, C Hamilton, G Laidlaw, D Blair, J Houston.

Leinster: G Dempsey, S Horgan, L Fitzgerald, B O'Driscoll, R Kearney, F Contepomi, C Whitaker, S Wright, B Jackman, CJ van der Linde, L Cullen (capt), D Toner, R Elsom, S Jennings, J Heaslip.
Replacements: J Fogarty, C Healy, T hogan, S Keogh, C Keane, J Sexton, G Brown.

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see also
Heineken Cup guide 2008-09
11 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Ulster 13-9 Edinburgh
03 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Connacht 19-18 Leinster
05 Oct 08 |  Irish
Heineken Cup 2008/9
17 Jul 08 |  Rugby Union
Scots braced for Euro adventure
08 Oct 08 |  Scottish

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