Heineken Cup champions Munster and Magners League champions Leinster both defeated English opposition at the weekend, helping to tip the balance of power in the Anglo-Irish rivalry in Europe westwards.
Munster’s 24-16 win in Pool 1 over Sale Sharks at Edgeley Park was the 40th victory by an Irish province over English club opposition in the Heineken Cup, giving the Irish a 53.33% success rate in all fixtures.
That game was the 75th between the two nations in the tournament and the Irish came out on top 2-1 over the weekend, with Leinster beating London Wasps 41-11 at the RDS in Pool 2 and Ulster going down 42-21 at Harlequins in Pool 4.
Leinster’s victory at the RDS was their biggest margin of victory over English opposition – 33 points compared to their previous best of 22 points against Leicester in 2000.
And it was also the first time they had scored six tries against an English team.
For Munster, their latest victory was their eighth on English soil over English opposition in 16 outings, giving them a 50% away success rate.
IRISH PROVINCES’ HEINEKEN CUP RECORDS AGAINST ENGLISH CLUBS:
ULSTER: Played – 22; Won – 6; Lost – 16; Percentage won – 27%
MUNSTER: Played – 28; Won – 18; Lost – 10; Percentage won – 64%
LEINSTER: Played – 25; Won – 16; Lost – 9; Percentage won – 64%
OVERALL: Played – 75; Won – 40; Lost – 35; Percentage won – 53%