Leinster snatched a bonus point in the 11th minute of injury time against Gloucester last night to give them an outside chance of a home draw in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals.
In a thrilling clash at Kingsholm, the Irishmen could not contain the home side in the second half and drifted to a 19-10 deficit before Gloucester infringed at a ruck, allowing Felipe Contepomi to capitalise.
But Gloucester had done what head coach Dean Ryan required. After losing their first three games in Pool Two, Ryan wanted a performance to provide a springboard for their Guinness Premiership campaign.
Gloucester's pack rumbled towards the line from a series of early line-outs but all they got for their efforts was a penalty - however, Willie Walker clipped the post with his kick.
Gloucester regrouped and after Jack Adams' charge to the line was halted, Brian O'Driscoll stuck his hands into the ruck and the Irish captain was sinbinned.
With a man over, Gloucester's pack powered over the whitewash and referee Nigel Owens awarded the penalty try when Leinster hauled the maul down. Walker converted.
Gloucester were reduced to 14 men after Peter Richards gave Owens a piece of his mind and was sinbinned, with O'Driscoll returning to the fray - he quickly made his presence felt, touching down seven minutes before the interval. Contepomi converted to level it up.
In the second half, Contepomi slotted a penalty to put Leinster in front but Gloucester hit back when replacement prop Christian Califano went over. Gloucester were soon back in Leinster's 22 and Mark Foster slid over in the 74th minute. Lamb converted before the injury-time drama.
Edinburgh suffered more Heineken Cup misery as their campaign ended in a 19-7 defeat to Agen at Murrayfield last night.
Bristol's hopes of topping Pool One in the European Challenge Cup were dashed despite a comfortable home win over Bucharest. With Newport-Gwent Dragons winning 29-15 away to Bayonne, the Premiership leaders finished as one of the best runners-up to qualify for a quarter-final place after a 33-19 win.
In Pool Two, Glasgow reached the quarter-finals of a European tournament for the first time thanks to a 6-6 draw at home to Saracens, who earned a home quarter-final tie.Reuse content