x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

A Brive encounter for London Irish

Toby Booth praised the quality of London Irish's all-round performance following their convincing 36-3 Heineken Cup triumph over Brive.

Toby Booth praised the quality of London Irish's all-round performance following their convincing 36-3 Heineken Cup triumph over Brive. The Exiles head coach watched on as his men romped to a hard-fought, five-try victory in central France on Saturday night thanks to 14 points from the boot of Chris Malone and two tries from Tom Homer. Booth saluted his side, who now top Pool Six ahead of reigning European champions Leinster on tries scored by just one touchdown.

Booth said: "We are delighted with the result because it was important to keep our hopes alive in the pool. It's a massive boost for us. "We knew that Brive had beaten Toulouse last weekend and would come into the game in confident mood. Plus, it's always difficult for a side like us to come to France so we knew it would be tough for us. But we came here with ambitions and the effort from the lads was massive.

"It was important we took care of the win first and the added bonus was the extra point. We hope that will be important as we aim to move forward towards the knockout stages." The Leinster head coach Michael Cheika was relieved his players did not pay the price for a lethargic second-half display following their 32-7 victory over Llanelli Scarlets . The defending champions set off at a blistering pace at Parc y Scarlets, scoring three tries in the first half to storm into a 22-0 lead. But they were unable to seal a bonus point until eight minutes from time when Sean O'Brien grabbed the vital try.

"I was pleased with the first half and the result," Cheika said. "But we gave them too much of a look-in in the second half. When you play like we did in the first half you have just got to keep going." * PA