Leinster win European Cup after beating Racing 92 15-12
BILBAO, Spain (AP) Leinster won the European Champions Cup for the fourth time by edging Racing 92 15-12 in a dour final at San Mames Stadium on Saturday.
Isa Nacewa landed the match-winning penalty in the 78th minute, but Leinster had to survive a frantic finish in which Racing replacement flyhalf Remi Tales pushed a dropped goal effort wide.
Racing shrugged off injuries to flyhalves Dan Carter and Pat Lambie to lead twice during a cagey first half, Teddy Iribaren’s two penalties being cancelled out by a Jonathan Sexton pair.
The 6-6 scoreline became 9-9 and 12-12 as Iribaren landed four of his five penalty attempts and Sexton finished with three.
It was left to the retiring captain Nacewa to bring Leinster level, before an offside decision against Tales allowed the 35-year-old winger to boot the Blues to their first European title since 2012.
The Irish tied Toulouse for most European Cups, and Leo Cullen is the first man to win the tournament as a player and a coach.
Nacewa, Cian Healy, Sexton, and Devin Toner all collected a record-equaling fourth title.
A pre-match hamstring injury spoiled Carter’s European swansong, and Lambie’s final lasted less than three minutes, the South African damaging his knee on an early break.