18 May, 15:44
It's down to the wire now for the five contenders who have been shortlisted for the ultimate individual accolade in northern hemisphere rugby, ERC European Player of the Year 2013.
But with recent success' the blue and gold brand has become a little bit more conspicuous, although by their own admission many fans can hardly pronounce the name themselves calling Leinster 'Lynnster' (as in Vera Lynn) as opposed to 'Lenstur' (as in Leon-ard Ni-moy).
It had not always been so for Leinster, as former Irish international Neil Francis reveals:"It could have been the Leinster Losers," he mused.
"Just as in life there are no lifeguards at the gene pool there was never any guardian angel at the Leinster playing pool. Talented players never became the players they should have been all drowned in a sea of mediocrity.
'It was inferred from time to time that if the pitch was a bit boggy and the precipitation came with a howling wind and the throne room was supplied with industrial strength sandpaper instead of two-ply velvet that Leinster's talented sides might be inclined to underperform.
'Some of the Leinster squads over the last decade or so (myself included) have a little row of golden statues on their mantelpiece for acts of benign self-immolation. There was so much talent yet there wasn't one lion in this den of Daniel's.'
In the 2000 season the fortunes of Leinster - recently rebranded Leinster Lions for that year '2000' pizzazz - began to change.
'Matt Williams, the former New South Wales coach came in to assist Mike Ruddock.
'After the Welshman's departure the metamorphosis from rugby players who get paid to play to the complete professional replete with higher mental focus and toughness came about.
'Talented clothes horses were given a sense of the collective, a powerful notion of a winning ethos was imbued and with a reinforced strand of discipline came the life-force of real spirit and heart.
'That unshakeable will to lose had evaporated. Leinster had become more than competent they were a good side. A good side characterised by their defence.
'This aspect of the game needs application, structure, ability to think on your feet when the ball is recycled at pace, discipline particularly when fatigue sets in and a couple of Lieutenants marshalling the cover.
'Most importantly it requires a good deal of heart which Leinster have now got. Competitive matches, particularly European Cup games are now dominated by defence. Most teams in the competition are skilled in this are. Leinster are one of the best they can play comfortably without the ball for five or six minutes. So if most teams excel in this area of mongrel warfare where is the stalemate breaker.
'Leinster have two blades who make a difference when it comes to making payola in those vital clutch plays outside the tag-team tackle plays.
**Click here to read more about Leinster
'Two one-eyed Jacks in the pack who are the difference between good and very good. Ten years ago maybe Groucho and Harpo now it' s Butch & Sundance. People realise how dangerous they are and long ago double-teamed them trying to work their stuff was like painting the Sistine Chapel while directing traffic.
Click here to read what was said when Neil Francis caught up will the most talented Leinster player of his generation: Brian O'Driscoll....
Excerpts of this article were taken from ERC's official magazine rugby Europe. To find out how to subscribe click here...