Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Schmidt celebrates home draw

Joe Schmidt

Leinster coach Joe Schmidt was celebrating securing a home tie in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup after seeing his side beat Montpellier 25-3.

Montpellier had no response to Leinster's attacking prowess with tries from Sean O'Brien and Rob Kearney during a wind-assisted first half and a third touchdown from Cian Healy doing most of the damage.

"We have a home quarter-final is the overriding verdict," said Schmidt when he assessed the the province's fifth win in six Pool 3 games. "I think when you get the stronger wind, like we did today, there is some pressure to get some advantage."

Schmidt was particularly pleased his players had got off to a good start.

"A couple of nice plays came off for us to get a couple of tries and build a 17-point lead and I thought there was really good character to defend off our line the way we did," added Schmidt.

Leinster spent much of the second quarter defending and the way they coped also pleased Schmidt.

He said: "There was a mix of the flashy stuff and the real 'role your sleeves up' stuff. Those two things gave us the half-time advantage and it was fantastic to score after half-time (through Healy)."

With few breaks in the Heineken Cup schedule this season, Leinster's 24-point haul at the top of the pool was an impressive return with the sole glitch coming in the round one draw at Montpellier.

Schmidt added: "It's a little bit hard, even more this year because there has been three months consecutive, but it's nice to have a bit of momentum, put a few good results together even if they haven't all been great performances.

"We just have to bide our time, watch a bit of Six Nations and hope guys come out of that fully fit."