Leinster reach Heineken Cup quarters


LONDON (Reuters) - Holders Leinster reached the Heineken Cup quarter-finals with a 23-16 away victory over Glasgow and Saracens moved to the brink of the last eight by edging Biarritz 20-16 on Sunday.

Ireland fullback Rob Kearney scored a try for Leinster early in the second half and Isaac Boss crossed the line in the closing stages to seal victory for the Irish side.

English champions Saracens were pushed all the way by French team Biarritz, needing a try by scrumhalf Ben Spencer and two Owen Farrell penalties to open up a 14-6 halftime lead in the Pool 5 match.

French international Dmitri Yachvili brought Biarritz back into contention with a converted try but Farrell kicked two more penalties to complete the Saracens victory.

Munster secured their quarter-final place on Saturday with a hard-fought 26-10 victory over French club Castres.

Ireland flyhalf Ronan O'Gara became the most capped player in the Heineken Cup, marking his 102nd appearance by kicking 16 points.

Ulster crushed Leicester 41-7 in Belfast to stay top of Pool 4 with two tries from Andrew Trimble and one each from Craig Gilroy and Paul Marshall.

Clermont Auvergne routed Italian side Aironi 82-0 to maintain their hopes of a quarter-final spot going into the final round of group fixtures.

The French club ran in 12 tries to set up a winner-takes-all clash with Ulster next weekend. Wings Sitiveni Sivivatu and Julien Malzieu scored three tries each.

Harlequins ended Gloucester's chances with a 20-14 victory which means top spot in Pool 6 will be decided next week when leaders Toulouse face Gloucester and Harlequins go to Connacht knowing they have to win.

Toulouse beat Connacht 24-3 at Stade Ernest Wallon.

On Friday Edinburgh retained top spot in Pool 2 with a last-gasp 27-24 victory at Racing Metro sealed by a drop goal from Phil Godman.

The six pool winners and two best second-placed teams advance to the quarter-finals.

(Reporting by Ed Osmond; Editing by John Mehaffey)

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