Former Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll has delivered a brutal assessment of the PRO14 by dubbing it a "poor, poor tournament."
The Irish powerhouses Leinster fell 32-23 to French side La Rochelle and speaking on OTB Sports O'Driscoll called into question the standard of opposition Leinster are facing at domestic level.
"Unless you find yourself in those circumstances a couple of times a year, it is very hard to prep yourself for it when the chips are down," he said of their Champions Cup semi-final defeat.
"There is an issue with the Pro 14, we have said it for a while. We've been trying to promote it as not so bad, but it's a poor, poor tournament. The quality is very poor. You look at what the English and French teams are having to deliver week on week, it is a dogfight.
"Leinster have won the PRO14 the last few years at a canter, using 59 players. That just shouldn't happen when you're able to delve that deep into your academy and sub-academy and produce try bonuses almost every game. What are you learning from that?
"You only learn from better teams; at the moment, other teams are learning from them and getting better as a result. I don't think Leinster are learning a huge amount because of the opposition they are coming up against week in, week out."
"Until they get the Stormers, the Sharks, and the other South African teams [...] I think they will get to a plateau level of still feeling that shock when they see the Skeltons, the Itojes or the Vunipolas coming at them."