easy win | 

Leo Cullen full of praise for Leinster’s four-try hero in Champions Cup rout over Connacht

James Lowe of Leinster after his side's victory

Cian Tracey

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen hailed the stunning four-try performance of James Lowe, as the Blues booked their place in the Heineken Champions Cup quarter-finals by easily seeing off Connacht at the Aviva Stadium.

Lowe was outstanding as he tormented the Connacht defence with a typical all-action display.

The Ireland winger repeated Jimmy O'Brien's four-try salvo from earlier in the tournament when Leinster won in Bath.

Cullen was delighted with Lowe, who is back to his best.

“He put in a good week this week," Cullen said of Lowe. "There is always bits of everyone's game to improve upon. He's very, very talented, as we know.

“When he really applies himself, he's as good as anyone out there. He worked hard this week and you can see the rewards that he got off the back of that.

“He brings a different level in terms of the power that he has in contact. It's a skill that he's able to manage contact on his terms.

“When we signed James, we saw that back in New Zealand with the Chiefs. He's here a long time now. He's a colourful character, as we know. It was great to see him go well over the last couple of weeks

“Our job is to get the best out of the players and maximise their potential. He has bucket loads of potential. It's about making sure we are working with him to get the best out of him. We recognise the special talents that he has.

“There is good positive pressure in the environment because there is good competition for places. The lads know they need to play well because if they don't someone else is ready to step into their place in the team.”

Jack Conan was forced off in the first-half with a neck injury, but Cullen allayed any fears around the Leinster and Ireland No 8, as he added:

"He just got a bit of a bang on his back, his neck, we could have left him out for longer but it was precautionary so we’ll see how that settles down."

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