Leinster back up to second with big win over Ospreys

United Rugby Championship

Leinster: (21) 61

Tries: O'Brien, Molony, Larmour 3, Jenkins, Osborne, Ngatai, T O'Brien Cons: Byrne 5, Frawley 3

Ospreys: (14) 14

Tries: Watkin, Penalty try Cons: Edwards

Leinster climbed back up to second spot in the United Rugby Championship (URC) with a commanding victory over Ospreys in Dublin.

Returning to league action after last weekend's successful Champions Cup semi-final against Northampton at Croke Park, Leinster ran in nine tries with Jordan Larmour claiming a hat-trick.

Ospreys had more than played their part in a first half where the sides shared five scores, with Leinster edging ahead 21-14 at the break.

The second half, however, was one-way traffic with the hosts serving up six unanswered tries.

The result is a serious blow to the Welsh region's play-off hopes, with Toby Booth's side falling to 11th in the table after a number of their rivals for the top eight won over the weekend.

Leinster had appeared to take charge of the game with a pair of early tries. The returning Jimmy O'Brien was the first player over with the Irish utility back running one in from distance off Ronan Kelleher's offload.

When Ross Moloney was driven over from close range soon after, Leinster looked in full control.

Ospreys, however, responded brilliantly to the early deficit, getting on the board themselves after 13 minutes.

With an scrum five metres out, Morgan Morris carried strongly off the base and Owen Watkin picked a hard line to barge over.

Five minutes later, the visitors were level.

Ospreys had penalty advantage when a Dan Edwards kick was sent towards Luke Morgan in the corner.

The winger gathered but was tackled in the air by Ciaran Frawley, with the TMO awarding a penalty try and sending Frawley to the sin-bin.

The 14 men would retake the lead when Max Nagy fumbled Ross Byrne's prod in behind beyond his own line, leaving Larmour with the simple task of touching down unchallenged.

While frustrating to come out of the sin-bin period worse off on the scoreboard, Ospreys were playing some enterprising, high-tempo rugby.

They threatened to level things again before the turn but Leinster held their seven-point advantage through to half-time.

The second half felt a different game. Less than a minute after the restart, Leinster had their fourth try of the contest.

Robbie Henshaw and Jimmy O'Brien linked up well in the passage preceding South African lock Jason Jenkins going over, and the try was to represent the opening of the floodgates.

Henshaw was centrally involved again for Leinster's fifth try with his carry and pass sending Larmour over in the corner for a second, after Dan Edwards had fumbled forward when attempting a kick.

With the strength of Leinster's bench apparent, Leo Cullen's men would add gloss to the score with four tries across the game's final 11 minutes.

Tommy O'Brien was one of the impressive replacements for the home side and it was his charge forward that created a try for Jamie Osborne.

A well-worked move off the line-out left the space for another replacement, Charlie Ngatai, to get in on the act, before Larmour completed his hat-trick with four minutes remaining.

Having created one score, Tommy O'Brien claimed one of his own in the last minute to round off another big win for Leinster.

Leinster: Frawley, Larmour, Osborne, Henshaw, J O’Brien, Byrne, McGrath; Porter, Kelleher, Furlong; Molony, Jenkins; Baird, Van der Flier, Doris (capt).

Replacements: Sheehan, Milne, Clarkson, Conan, Penny, Gibson-Park, Ngatai, T O’Brien.

Sin-bin: Frawley (18)

Ospreys: Nagy; L Morgan, Watkin, Williams, Giles; Edwards, Morgan-Williams; Smith Lake, Henry; Ratti, Sutton; Deaves, Tipuric (capt), Morris.

Replacements: Parry, Thomas, Botha, Sekekete, J Morgan, Davies, Walsh, Boshoff.

Sin-bin: Boshoff (76)

Referee: Sam Grove-White.