Leinster 38 Glasgow Warriors 23
Leinster edged closer to second spot in the Magners League as they hit Glasgow for five tries at Donnybrook.
Without their Ireland contingent and Argentinian talisman Felipe Contepomi, Leinster still had enough firepower to see off a gritty Warriors side.
Samoan prop Fosi Pala’amo and former Wallaby scrum-half Chris Whitaker both scored their first tries for Leinster as Michael Cheika’s men grabbed their 12th straight home win in all competitions.
Glasgow, who have now lost 10 times on the trot to the Irishmen, took an 18-16 lead into the break with tries from Jon Petrie and Thom Evans, but they could only add a Kevin Tkachuk effort as Leinster dominated the second half.
Fit-again winger Rob Kearney, kicking in the absence of Contepomi, landed a fourth-minute penalty to get Leinster off the mark.
The hosts’ forwards foraged well in the wet conditions and were rewarded on 12 minutes when the 6ft 10in Devin Toner sucked in a lineout ball and Pala’amo was mauled over.
Kearney missed the conversion and while Dan Parks replied with a penalty, Leinster gained further control in the 28th minute when Hefin O’Hare fumbled a kick ahead from replacement Andrew Dunne and hooker Brian Blaney dribbled the loose ball forward to touch down.
Dunne struck his conversion attempt wide and, against the run of play, Glasgow gained a foothold to take an undeserved lead into the break.
Two errors allowed the Scots in for a quick brace of tries. On 33 minutes, full-back Fitzgerald was caught in possession, and a clever switch by Parks out to the right allowed Petrie to squeeze in at the corner.
Parks brilliantly converted and, two minutes before the interval, a botched Leinster lineout saw the ball spun out to winger Evans who scored in the left corner, although referee James Jones failed to spot a clear case of obstruction in the build-up.
Cheika was left fuming, moments later, when a legitimate try from Denis Hickie was ruled out for crossing.
Welsh official Jones was winning few admirers but Kearney’s injury-time penalty did cut the gap to two points.
A bulldozing run from Pala’amo, two minutes after the restart, scattered enough bodies for Hickie to run in his fourth try in seven league games and shunt Leinster back in front.
Sean Lineen’s visitors hit back, only three minutes later, when Canadian prop Tkachuk powered over from close range.
Leinster took charge for the remainder with Kearney kicking a penalty, a flurry of recycles seeing Whitaker scamper through on the hour mark.
Right on 80 minutes number eight Jamie Heaslip crowned his night as stand-in captain with a fifth try after plenty of forward pressure.