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Thousands Welcome Home The Leinster Heros

 

Updated : May 25, 2009

More than 8,000 ecstatic rugby fans welcomed home the victorious Leinster team to Dublin after their thrilling Heineken Cup success.

The Blues completed a two-in-a-row for Irish clubs in the European competition after Munster’s win last year and saw Ireland continue their dominance of European Rugby with victory.

Team captain Leo Cullen led his teammates as they paraded the trophy among a sea of Leinster flags at the RDS venue in Ballsbridge. Players signed autographs in the brilliant sunshine and reflected on Saturday’s 19-16 battle with Leicester Tigers at Murrayfield in Edinburgh.

Stars such as Brian O’Driscoll, Jamie Heaslip, Luke Fitzgerald and Rob Kearney were absent from the homecoming as they have already joined the British and Irish Lions squad en route to South Africa.

“It is such a great achievement for the team and the fans and it has been a long time coming,” captain Leo Cullen told the crowd.

The 31-year-old lock forward, who played for Leicester from 2005-2007, said he hoped the victory would be a platform for more success.

“Hopefully, this will be a stepping stone for us to go on and be successful for many years to come,” he added.

One of the biggest cheers of the day came when Cullen raised aloft the trophy with coach, Australian Michael Cheika.

 

 

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