Dave Rennie feels his Glasgow side didn’t take their opportunities

There was disappointment in the Glasgow camp but when they find the wherewithal to look back over the video of this match, Dave Rennie and the remainder of the Glasgow hierarchy will find much to like.

Warriors head coach Dave Rennie

If someone had claimed a decade ago that the club would attract north of 47,000 spectators to a Pro14 final they would have been dismissed as fantasists.

Glasgow conceded two soft tries and they also seemed to be battling the match officials.

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Nigel Owens has been the best of his generation for a long time now but there is a feeling that Owen’s best days are all behind him. He made a howler to gift the Pro14 semi-final to Munster when Benetton deserved it and he made a few mistakes yesterday, notably in showing a yellow rather than a red card for Rob Kearney’s challenge on Stuart Hogg.

It also looked like the Welsh official was a little trigger happy when it came to the set scrum. One penalty late in the first half resulted in three points to Johnny Sexton but only after the crowd vented their rage as it seemed like the Glasgow scrum had the nudge on Leinster, at least until Jamie Bhatti lost his footing in the sodden turf.

Both props remonstrated with Owens but to no avail.

After the game Sexton admitted that it had been a 
tight game when the flyhalf made the following statement: “We knew we didn’t have to win all the moments, we just had to win more of them than Glasgow.”

And that is pretty much what Leinster did. They won a few more moments than Glasgow did and coach Leo Cullen admitted that, in the conditions, whichever side could get their nose in front would have the advantage of making the opposition play catch-up.

“It wasn’t the prettiest of games maybe. I thought the players have applied themselves unbelievably well over the last couple of weeks after losing a final,” said Cullen, with reference to their Champions Cup defeat by Saracens.

“I thought we had some chances early on, didn’t quite finish them. Glasgow came into the game and were very strong.

“From 7-0 [down] it was a big moment: we hit back straight away, then we had a period when we were in the ascendancy. We were able to manage that period quite well, and with the conditions the way they were it was going to be hard chasing the game. For most of the second half I thought we played the territory game pretty well.”

His opposite number, Rennie, was obviously wrestling with one overriding emotion after the defeat. “Disappointing,” he replied when asked what his immediate thoughts were.

“We are a better side than that. We have played a lot better footy than that in the last few weeks.

“We just made too many errors. They [Leinster] put a lot of pressure on us through their kicking game. I think they defended really well.

“There were a few opportunities and we didn’t take them.”

The fact that Glasgow’s backs barely merit a mention suggests that they didn’t do much. Was that down to the wet weather or Leinster’s all-enveloping defence?

“Probably a bit of both,” replied the Kiwi. “There were some opportunities, if we got the ball to the right person. Sometimes we went short when we should have gone out the back.

“But Leinster had a lot of line speed. Probably more than they normally bring.”

It was a near miss and it was with a mix of emotions on his face that Rennie noted: “We can play a lot better and we only lost by three.”