GUINNESS PRO12: Leinster let off hook by Munster to go top of the table

r'Munster's Tommy O'Donnell is closed down by Leinster
r'Munster's Tommy O'Donnell is closed down by Leinster

LEINSTER 16 MUNSTER 13

Johnny Sexton scored all of Leinster’s points as they went top of the Pro12 with a 16-13 derby win over Munster at the Aviva Stadium.

A week on from losing to Connacht, Leo Cullen’s men joined the westerners at the summit, and the Irish pair hold home advantage in the play-off race with three rounds to go.

In front of a 43,108 attendance, Sexton’s timely touchdown just before half-time ended Leinster’s 260-minute try drought in the league, and left Munster trailing 10-6.

Young fly-half Johnny Holland, who started instead of Ian Keatley, had twice kicked the visitors in front before that, and he brilliantly converted his own 47th-minute try for a 13-10 turnaround.

But a couple of assured place-kicks from Sexton, with Keatley missing his only attempt of the night, had Leinster on the cusp of their first season’s double over Munster since 2012/13.

They had to survive a frenetic late assault on their try-line, though, with Cian Healy in the sin-bin. Mike Sherry went closest for the men in red but Jamie Heaslip and Ben Te’o typified a Leinster defence that would not yield.