The British & Irish Lions coaches were out and about again over the weekend with Warren Gatland and Welsh Championship winning coach Rob Howley joining forces at Thomond Park to watch the big Irish Inter-Pro derby between Munster and Leinster.
The game was a clash between two European semi-finalists – Munster are in the last four of the Heineken Cup and Leinster the Amlin Challenge Cup – and it ended with one of the biggest names in the game, Brian O’Driscoll diving over for the match winning score in a 22-16 win.
That victory maintained Leinster’s push for a home semi-final in the RaboDirct PRO12 Play-Offs and, with two games to go, they could end their season with back-to-back finals in the Amlin Challlnege Cup and RaboDirect PRO12 at their RDS home.
O’Driscoll’s 2009 Lions centre partner, Jamie Roberts, made a try scoring farewell at Cardiff Arms Park as he scored a try in Cardiff Blues’ 28-13 win over Zebre in their final home fixture of the season. Roberts is heading to France next season, probably linking up with Jonny Sexton at Racing Metro in Paris.
Saracens secured a home Play-Off semi-final in the Aviva Premiership with a 47-17 win at Worcester, while 2009 Lions wing Ugo Monye kept English champions Harlequins on course for a top four finish as he scored a try to mark his 30th birthday in a 23-9 home win over Bath.
There was also a try for Ulster wing Tommy Bowe in his first start since returning from injury. He bagged a try in a 31-5 home win over the Dragons that kept his side on top of the PRO12 table.
In the big game in France, the top two sides in the Top 14 drew 26-26 in Marseilles. Jonny Wilkinson had the chance to clinch victory for Toulon against fellow Heineken Cup semi-finalists ASM Clermont Auvergne with a long range penalty, but he couldn’t find the range.
But Wales utility back James Hook was on song for Perpignan as he grabbed 23 points in his side’s 33-28 win over fellow Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-finalists Biarritz Olympique.