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IT Sun, May 27

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  • 15:34
    Good afternoon and welcome to the Irish Times' live text commentary for the RaboDirect Pro 12 final on what will hopefully be a double-winning day for Leinster at the RDS.

    Carl O'Malley here. But enough about me, what about you? Where are you tuning from and what are your predictions?
  • 15:37
    It's been a busy weekend in 'sawker', with Team Ireland scoring a one to nothing victory over Bosnia last night, but the biggest news in rugby so far has been the loss of Stephen Ferris to the Ireland squad.
  • 15:38
    StephenFerris6 via Twitter Gutted not to be heading to Nz with the boys. Best of luck to all the lads and my mate @KMcLaughlin6 on a successful tour.
  • 15:41
    Kevin McLaughlin has yet to Tweet about his good fortune but as soon as he does, literally, the very second, I'll retweet that mutha.
  • 15:50

    Mc Laughlin, of course, will be firmly focused on today and the Ospreys as Leinster chase the league title to add to their third European Cup in four years, which they won in convincing fashion last weekend against Ulster.

    LEINSTER: R Kearney; F McFadden, B O’Driscoll, G D’Arcy, I Nacewa, J Sexton, E Reddan; H van der Merwe, S Cronin, M Ross, L Cullen (capt), D Toner, K McLaughlin, S Jennings, J Heaslip. Replacements: R Strauss, J McGrath, N White, B Thorn, D Ryan, J Cooney, I Madigan, D Kearney.

    OSPREYS: R Fussell; H Dirksen, A Bishop, A Beck, S Williams; D Biggar, R Webb; P James, R Hibbard, A Jones, A Wyn Jones (Capt), I Evans, R Jones, J Tipuric, J Bearman. Replacements: S Baldwin, R Bevington, A Jarvis, J King, T Smith, K Fotuali’i, M Morgan, T Isaacs.

  • 15:53
    We're eight minutes away from kick-off, there will be just five minuted build-up on RTE. Not sure what they can get through in that time, so here's Gerry Thornley's preview from yesterday's paper
  • 15:53
    Éamonn Following from Kutaisi, Georgia. Hope the lads are not too drained from last week and can earn themselves the victory today!
  • 15:54
    Welcome Éamonn. Gerogia, eh? Big rugby country, of course. Is there much interest over there in this final, or last weekend's?
  • 15:57
    Éamonn Not much of a rugby country to be honest. They should be though they have the body types for it. Wall to wall tightheads. Not sure about interest in the Heineken cup here. More in the internationals. Don't know what they're missing!
  • 16:01

    Conor O'Shea, fresh from his own final victory with Harlequins yesterday, reckons there is "no way" Leinster are not going to take this. Considering not many gave his side a hope yesterday, he should no the danger of predictions like that.

  • 16:01
    Here we go!!
  • 16:03
    1 min:  Leinster on the move from their own 22, with Cronin and then BOD. Reddan oddering quick ball already as Leinster make ground in the first 60 seconds.
  • 16:05
    2 min:  Penalty Leinster after Ospreys come in from the side and Cronin runs at Ospreys.Tipuric penalised at the breakdown for Ospreys, that might have been fortunate, and Sexton has a sight at the posts.
  • 16:06
    carlomalley via Twitter Live Pro 12 final blog, @IrishTimes
  • 16:07
    4 min:  Sexton pushes it to the left from a long way out and the scores remain level.
  • 16:08
    McLaughlin puts in a big hit on Ian Evans but the up and under from Ospreys causes problems for Leinster and Reddan does well to gather but he's dragged into touch by Hanno Dirksen
  • 16:09
    7 min: Ospreys win their lineout but Leinster have turned it over and Reddan feeds McFadden who tries to outrun Williams but the wee man from Wales hauls him down.
  • 16:09
    Leinster off their feet, penalty Ospreys.
  • 16:10
    8 min:  Dan Biggar is over this one on the left hand touchline. It's the right side for him and Biggar has been in great form this season.
  • 16:10
    And he still is!! 243 points for the season for the 22-year-old.
  • 16:10
    Shelley I'm following the action from New York City. Thank you Irish Times for providing up to the minute coverage. I anticipate a tough contest but that Leinster will prevail.
  • 16:11
    9 min:  Who else but Rob Kearney gathers the restart and pummels into the Ospreys defence. Leinster looking to strike back early here and they win a penalty after Paul James went off his feet.
  • 16:12
    10 min:  This one is easier for Sexton. Right side, much closer and should be straight forward. *Commentator's curse*
  • 16:13
    Not this time. It's over and the scores are level. Great response from Leinster there and Toner takes the restart.
  • 16:17

    12 min: Scrum Leinster, just inside their own half. Leo Cullen looks to have recovered from a knock he took a few minutes ago.

    Cian Healy and Eoin O'Malley shown in the stands by the camera there. Busy hands from the former on the latter there. *careful now*

  • 16:18
    14 min: Trouble at the scrum here for Leinster, and Ireland. Mike Ross looks to have a hamstring knack and he's receiving treatment from the medical staff.
  • 16:19
    He's back on his feet and there's a muted, relieved applause but he's not happy and now he's being replaced by Nathan White.
  • 16:19

    15 min:  Scrum goes down and Leinster get a penalty. Paul James the guilty party again.

  • 16:21

    16 min:  Nacewa tries a chip pver hte top and is blocked by, eh, Toner, it seems. Here he comes again, though, down the left, feeds Cronin but the hooker's pass goes to an Ospreys hand.

  • 16:22

    Leinster find the corner with a kick, though, after good work from Sexton. Ospreys take the linout and Fussell clears long.

  • 16:22
    17 min:  Nacewa puts it high again and Ryan Jones beats McFadden to it in the air.
  • 16:23
    Leinster asking plenty of questions, though, and Naewa has looked very lively in the last few minutes. He's slipped into full-back, it seems, after Kearney shipped a big hit from Alun Wyn Jones.
  • 16:24
    19 min: Van der Merwe barrels into the Ospreys defence, little chip over the top from Sexton, but Williams counters and three Leinster men haul him into touch.  Good game so far.
  • 16:26
    Ospreys break from a stray pass to D'Arcy, Bishop sprints clear from 70 yards out and Rhys Webb almost makes the line before Leinster regroup and, illegally, prevent a try.
  • 16:27
    Leinster could be down to 14 men but they have escaped that, simply because Roman Poite, it seems, wasn't sure who to bin
  • 16:28
    23 min:  Leinster look to hit back again but Ospreys turn it over and Webb clears with the boot.
  • 16:30
    24 min:  Heaslip thunders through Biggar, who is, funnily enough, considerably smaller, but Leinster lose control again and its an Ospreys scrum. The visitors aren't about to roll over here.
  • 16:31
    25 min:  They're on the back foot now, though, as Leinster are up quick and BOD disrupts before Nacewa pounces on the loose ball. Leinster send it out wide right and McFadden is stopped by Fussell/
  • 16:33
    TRY TRY!!! Leinster:   They tasted blood, Leinster, and they went for it. BOD was immense in dragging in two defenders and offloading to Cronin, who has men to beat, but there's no stopping him from 10 yards out at that pace.
  • 16:34
    Sexton adds the extras with a lovely conversion from the left.
  • 16:35

    Toner takes the restart again and is then on hand to gather up a loose ball and pop a pass out wide before Kearney finds a goot touch with a grubber kick.

  • 16:37
    30 min: Nacewa takes the Ospreys clearance and offloads to Kearney. Looks like Leinster lost it forward there and there was a bit of a scrap on the ground after Shane Jennings looked to be over eager with the feet.

    Ospreys warned by Poite to stop the backchat.
  • 16:39
    31 min:  Leinster scrum after they fended off a Webb break and then another from Bishop. Scrum collapses and is to be reset.
  • 16:41
    Again it's gone down and it's a penalty Ospreys. Nathan White the guilty party according to Poite.

    Biggar hits a beaut of a penalty between the posts. One point in it!
  • 16:43

    'Boom', as the say down D4 way, and it's pretty accurate in this case. Sexton's restart towards the left hand touchline is plucked out of the sky by Nacewa who tears off down the touchline and over the line. Ospreys in shock.

    Is there another team in the hemisphere that can do that when needed?
  • 16:44
    Sexton curls the extras over the bar. Eight points in it all of a sudden.
  • 16:45
    38 min:  Ospreys aren't for wilting though, they are coming straight back at Leinster and there's ferocious battle at the breakdown five metres from the Leinster line. Ospreys get the call and it's a scrum to the visitors.

  • 16:47
    Scrum goes down twice and it's gone against Leinster again. Cullen told by Poite that White is going down, repeatedly, and there has to be word.
  • 16:48
    Again it's gone down and here comes a card, but it's van der Merwe who goes.Leinster down to 14.
  • 16:49
    40+min:  McLaughlin makes way as Jack McGrath comes on. Nacewa has gone into the backrow! He's not that good.
  • 16:51

    Another scrum goes down. there's a bit of handbags as well. Leinster hanging on here a bit and they need a whistle here.

    It comes, but it's not good, McGrath accused of going down now. Poite tells Cullen it's another yellow or a penalty try after another collapse.

    Cullen asks: 'Are they not going down at all?'

  • 16:52
    This is getting a bit farcical now. Poite can't make a decision one way or the other.
  • 16:53
    I wrote that before it was said on commentary by the way. Donal Lenihan's copying me :)

    Now the whistle comes and it goes Leinster's way. Ospreys are furious. They should really have had a penalty try ages ago if Poite thought Leinster were repeatedly offending.
  • 16:58
    Éamonn Bit bizarre from Poite, not surprising though. Why did he bother with the yellow card? Why didn't he just give a penalty try and let the game continue? Big boost for Leinster to escape to the interval with an 8 point lead. Have to bring on big bad Brad now to steady the scrum especially with our first choice tight head off. Leinster forwards seem to be under a lot of pressure from the big Ospreys pack. Backs are good enough to win it though even without O'Brien giving us go forward ball. Hon' the lads!
  • 17:01
    Can't argue with that.

    Incidentally, there was a bit of a rumble down the tunnel involving Heaslip and anyone who wanted it basically. Ian Evans was involved but I missed the start of it and the culprit. Safe to say, they should all know better. 
  • 17:02
    Also safe to say, it was sparked by some serious indecision from Poite, who, like many refs do, seemed to be making it up as he went along on what was going on in those frontrows.
  • 17:03
    Éamonn Ian Evans is a good second row. But anymore testosterone in him and he'd have to live up a tree.
  • 17:05

    Yeah, I'd like to see you say that if you weren't thousands of miles away.

  • 17:06
    Éamonn I'd tell him he's a good second row any day of the week!
  • 17:06

    O'Shea and Horgan have some sympathy with the players after frustrations spilled over in the tunnel. Poite in hte firing line, really. Pope agrees, but appears miles away, checking out the skirt maybe.

  • 17:07
    41 min: Ospreys on the attack from the restart. Bishop breaks, then Biggar and Williams is taken down.
  • 17:08
  • 17:09
    It looks like it is from Beck. Despite Sexton trying to pull his head off in the tackle, he got the ball down. Biggar converts for a great start to the half from Ospreys.
  • 17:11

    44 min: Leinster have a sight of the posts already. Fussell's backchat gets him in trouble and Sexton is a way out but he should put it over from the left handside

  • 17:12
    And he does! Leinster experts at striking back immediately. Four points in it and here comes Brad Thorn for Cullen.
  • 17:13
    46 min: Webb breaks nicely through the Leinster cover, dummying two players, but the homeside reclaim possession through Heaslip and Sexton will clear after Biggar was offside.
  • 17:14
    BOD has to take a ball high and takes it into contact. Nacewa tries a grubber but it's blocked and Ospreys take control. The up and under sees Dirksen beat Kearney in the air. A rarity.
  • 17:15
    48 min:  Ospreys still going forward over the 10 metre.  Dirksen is taken down by Nacewa and Leinster clear. Big hit from Isa.
  • 17:16
    Scrum Leinster and are we going to have more issues at the setpiece now?
  • 17:18

    50 min:  Scrum stays up and Reddan feeds BOD. Leinster get the penalty after Ospreys hands on the ground.  Alun Wyn Jones the man responsible. Ridiculous, brazen foul in front of the ref.

  • 17:18
    51 min: Sexton to hit it from the right.
  • 17:18
    ceartgoleor for those of us with lousy internet connection, is there any chance of posting a scoreline here? Or is there a bet riding for you, to be paid of in Merrion Row later?
  • 17:20
    Sexton converts, there's seven points in it.

    ceatgoleor, there should be a scoreboard at the bottom of the window. Please tell me there is.
  • 17:22
    Mayhem here. 

    Leinster break after BOD tackles Fussell, Jennings picks up and it's flung out to Nacewa who is forced into touch just before the line.

    Ospreys try a quick one to Bishop, but he's not even looking! Leinster pounce and win a five metre scrum.
  • 17:23
    Leinster penalisedd, though, not sure what for, neither is Heaslip. Ospreys clear the danger.
  • 17:23
    PJ Now which IT genius puts the scoreboard below the fold?????
  • 17:23
    The point has been raised, PJ.
  • 17:25
    57 min: Big scrum from Leinster and they make ground with Strauss. On to the 22 with Thorn, high tackle, perhaps, but he keeps going. Leinster lose it forward and it's a scrum Ospreys.
  • 17:26
    59 min: Ospreys dominate that one and win the penalty. They find touch by halfway.
  • 17:28
    Ashley Beck punches a hole and it goes wide to Fussell, who offloads to Williams.

    Reddan takes him high but Williams stays strong and makes it over in his last competitive game for Ospreys. TMO says yes. It's all to play for.
  • 17:28
    Biggar to tie the game.
  • 17:29
    He can't. Great strike but he just fails to curl it in.
  • 17:29
    20 minutes left now and it's anyone's game.

    Ryan Jones adjudged not have blocked Nacewa at the restart.
  • 17:30
    ceartgoleor Thanks, PJ. I thought it was just me; or as we're in deepest Somerset, I've always suspected that the Broadband was controlled by Bath.....
  • 17:31
    Nacewa breaks again, however, and finds touch with a grubber in the corner. Ospreys go quick again from the lineout and again they almost pay for it, with some ragged handling but they scramble it clear eventually.
  • 17:32
    Leinster on the move again after taking the lineout, a big maul, Strauss heads into the 22, Heaslip takes it on and it breaks loose for ISA NACEWA again! TRY LEINSTER
  • 17:33
    Nothing wrong with it, Reddan tried a reverse pop pass, missed his man, but Isa gathered and ducked under two tackles to take it over the line for his second try.
  • 17:34
    65 min:  Sexton boots the extra points and it's a nine-point lead again.
  • 17:34
    PK Simplest solution is to quote the score in the main text body with each update....
  • 17:37

    Leinster 30 Ospreys 21:  Ospreys break into Leinster's 22 but the homeside turn it over and it's booted clear by McFadden. Injured Strauss is replaced by Cronin.

  • 17:38
    69 min:  Leinster 30 Ospreys 21: Ospreys ask more questions and this time it's Jennings who steals, Kearney clears.
  • 17:38
    Shelley I thought it would be tough alright. This is tight and will be down to the wire.
  • 17:38
    Thank you for not mentioning the scoreboard, Shelley
  • 17:40

    71 min: Leinster 30 Ospreys 21:  Ryan Jones and then Alan Wyn Jones break forward. Big tackles going and Reddan holds up Williams and Leinster get the call again after a massive defensive effort.

  • 17:40
    Éamonn Shades of Clermont here. It'll go to the end. But home advantage this time might be decisive
  • 17:40
    Shelley Admittedly I scrolled down to read it. : )
  • 17:41

    72 min: Leinster 30 Ospreys 21:  Scrum Leinster in their own 22. Poite whistles and there is a card for White.  Not good. 

  • 17:43
    Leinster have opted for uncontested scrums, now, and AJ Jones opts to shoot for the posts instead of the going for the scrum. Biggar lines one up from the left, it's a tight angle.
  • 17:44
    Leinster 30 Ospreys 24:  It was close but it's over. Six points in it. Dominic Ryan is on for Jennings.
  • 17:46

    Leinster 30 Ospreys 21: BOD blocks down a clearance attempt from Dirksen and Leinster attack the Ospreys 22 with Heaslip but Ryan is guilty of blocking. Ospreys find touch and win the lineout.

  • 17:46
    caitlin come on Leinster - hang on inthere!!
  • 17:47
    76 min: Leinster 30 Ospreys 24:  Penalty Ospreys. They go for the corner from just inside Leinster half.
  • 17:47
    Leinster 30 Ospreys 24: They take it cleanly and are into the 22, just.
  • 17:48
    Beck attacks the line, then Biggar, Williams is lurking on the left. Baldwin makes ground
  • 17:49
    77 min: Leinster 30 Ospreys 29:  Not far off the line now, options to the right as well, and it's Williams. It looks like he has crossed om the right this time. It's gone upstairs but it looks good, or bad....
  • 17:50
    TMO says yes and it's a one-point game. Biggar has to send it over from the touchline, wrong side, but he doesn't care. It's over.
  • 17:51
    79 min: Leinster 30 Ospreys 31: Ospreys claim the restart. Leinster need a score. Anything.
  • 17:51
    ceartgoleor This is torture
  • 17:52
    Leinster 30 Ospreys 31: Leinster have one minute to do something. Williams, what a man. His last ever game, two second half tries in a final. Amazing.
  • 17:53
    Leinster 30 Ospreys 31: 20 seconds left, Leinsyer win it back and the break with BOD and the Isa.
  • 17:53
    Leinster 30 Ospreys 31: The RDS crowd urge them on, they're a bit too far out for a drop goal.
  • 17:55

    Leinster 30 Ospreys 31:  Kearney tries to break through, time is well up at this stage.  Ospreys defending well. BOD breaks but the Ospreys turn it over and hack it clear!! It's over, the game is over, the double is over, the dream is over. Shattered by that wee try-machine from the valleys.

  • 17:56
    Shelley A drop goal to end it perhaps?
  • 17:56
    Nope, sorry, no fairytale ending. Ospreys have nicked by a point.
  • 17:57
    O'Driscoll is emptied on the pitch, as are his team-mates. Joe Schmidt commiserates with his men.
  • 17:57
    Guest What a frustrating end
  • 17:59
    That was an awful way to end the season for Leinster. Darragh sticking the boot into Popey for saying they "let themselves down". He meant it in a good way, but Darragh's appalled.
  • 18:00
    Éamonn Two home finals lost to the ospreys... three finals in a row lost now. Weird
  • 18:54
    Guest Joke of a referee and Shane Williams gets another trophy what an all round travesty.
  • 18:56

    Now, now, let's not be bitter about it. The referee could have given them a try in the first half as well.

    Here's a match report and a pic that might sting a little.

    Thanks for reading.