PRO14 Final ratings: A typical Leinster Munster affair: brutal intensity, even if the game itself lacked spectacle.
Leinster suffocated their southern rivals and the 16 – 6 scoreline in truth flattered Munster, whose Irish contingent failed to fire.
HUGO KEENAN – 7.5
One of a select number of Irish players to enjoy a Six Nations stock rise. Unflappable under the highball and consistently elusive in attack.
JORDAN LARMOUR – 7.5
A mixed bagged for Larmour, who blended beating defenders close-in with some more ragged moments. Looks a little low on confidence.
RORY O’LOUGHLIN – 5
O’Loughlin has rarely failed to deliver when called upon by Leinster but it was a lousy start to the final for the outside centre, throwing an awful pass to Larmour with the try line beckoning. In fact his passing service was iffy all evening. A game to forget.
ROBBIE HENSHAW – 8
A potential Lions tour face-off with Springbok centre Damian De Allende, and it was a match-up that didn’t fail to deliver. Henshaw was everywhere for Leinster, and was still fighting for those precious inches as the full-time whistle approached.
DAVE KEARNEY – 7.5
Kearney getting the nod ahead of James Lowe raised a few eyebrows. A clever, dependable defender who nearly always makes correct decisions under pressure, he justified the selection decision.
ROSS BYRNE – 8
Trusted to start ahead of Jonny Sexton by Cullen, Byrne’s metronomic boot was a real weapon. His axis with McGrath was maybe the key difference between the sides today. A lower limb injury slowed him down in the second half.
LUKE MCGRATH – 8
An electric start to proceedings for McGrath, who was key to Leinster’s early tempo.
CIAN HEALY – 6.5
The 33-year-old’s carrying game is clearly no longer effective but he continues to be an absolute rock for Leinster.
RÓNAN KELLEHER – 8
Kelleher’s explosive carrying always catches the eye and he’s a canny defender. A superb outing.
ANDREW PORTER – 8
Another man on the margins of the Warren Gatland’s plans this summer, you fancy Porter might feel lucky that the referee took a sympathetic view of his collision with Jean Kleyn. His carrying and passing game were world-class by tighthead standards.
DEVIN TONER – 7.5
Broke the Leinster cap record held by Gordon D’Arcy. Made himself useful across the park in what was a red-letter day for the Meathman.
SCOTT FARDY – 7
The redoubtable Australian veteran was unlucky not to score after a ferocious carry that flattened Joey Carbery.
RHYS RUDDOCK – 7.5
A dogged and industrious performance from Leinster’s Mr Consistency, with a strong carrying display in heavy traffic and in open field.
JOSH VAN DER FLIER – 8
It’s fair to say that Van Der Flier carrying is generally considered more competent than combative, but you wouldn’t have known it from this outing, where he was skittling defenders at times.
JACK CONAN – 8.5
Conan’s rugby IQ is what tends to stand out and he dominated proceedings in the second half. Ireland have a fine No.8 replacement for Stander.
MIKE HALEY – 6.5
A few bright contributions but was left a bystander for much of proceedings. Fielded everything sent his way.
ANDREW CONWAY – 6
Another player with a point to prove. Did his best to make things happen with limited opportunity.
CHRIS FARRELL – 6.5
A brick wall in defence, even if his handling skills let him down at times.
DAMIAN DE ALLENDE – 7.5
The Springbok was key in turning the Leinster tide in the first half; he was destroyer in chief when it came to Leinster’s attacking platform.
KEITH EARLS – 5.5
Wanted to get involved but was limited to a few cameos. A real come down after his show-stopping game against England. His 71st-minute knock-on summed up his evening.
JOEY CARBERY – 5
Carbery will have been desperate to lay down a marker after such limited opportunity to put himself in the shop window. Never got the front foot ball he needed.
CONOR MURRAY – 6
The Lions subplot was strong here, with Murray Andy Farrell’s second choice in the Six Nations. His search for some real form continues.
JAMES CRONIN – 6
Another Munsterman who spent the afternoon tackling everything in sight. Leinster just about shaded the scrummaging.
NIALL SCANNELL – 6.5
Will surely feel aggrieved to have fallen out of Ireland contention, making his personal battle with Kelleher all the more fascinating. Kelleher definitely outshone him though.
JOHN RYAN – 6
A solid shift from the big tighthead, who held his own at set-piece.
JEAN KLEYN – 7.5
The South African bruiser took a big knock early doors but it didn’t slow him down, and he soon got his own back by flooring Cian Healy. On Coombe’s heels for Munster’s standout forward.
TADHG BEIRNE – 5
A surprisingly quiet game for a man so strongly tipped for Lions duty and a standout against England the weekend before. You wouldn’t have known it was a league final going on this no-show from a man in such fine form leading up to this day. Was distraught at the final whistle.
GAVIN COOMBES – 8
Munster’s big back row discovery this season had a solid start to the game, even with Munster in survival mode. Did brilliantly to deny Scott Fardy a certain try and was Munster’s key carrier. The future is very, very bright.
PETER O’MAHONY – 6
The normally combative back row was one of the number of Ireland players that seemed to be operating with a flat battery. Sadly subbed off with what looked like a significant injury.
CJ STANDER – 5
All the noise has been about Stander departure from Ireland duty, but it’s the impact he had at Munster that might be the bigger contribution. Another player with an apparent Six Nations hangover, although he did lead Munster’s tackling stats.
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