Leinster are back in the Heineken Champions Cup final after seeing off the challenge of Toulouse at a scorching hot Aviva Stadium.

The win sets up a mouthwatering final against champions of England Saracens - who were far too strong for Munster yesterday in the other semi-final - in St James' Park, Newcastle on 11 May.

Scott Fardy, who was a late replacement for Rhys Ruddock in the starting line-up, Luke McGrath and James Lowe all crossed for five-pointers.

Returning out-half Johnny Sexton kicked 12 points and the French side, who had beaten Leinster last October, could only muster four penalties in reply and never really looked like causing an upset against the reigning champions.

"It's amazing for all the supporters here today," man-of-the-match Sexton said.

"It's very special, we don't play to try and get into finals, we play to win them.

"We stayed on it, we know they can score tries from out of nowhere, everyone is so proud to play for this team.

"We spoke a little bit about [winning a fifth European Cup] but not too much.

"Sarries are a fantastic team, we saw them yesterday how they dominated Munster, we're going to be up against it."

Worries about Leinster coming in cold, having rested a number of key players in the Guinness Pro14 over the last three weeks, proved wide of the mark.

Instead, this was the European champions almost back to their very best, playing at a high tempo, not allowing the French any space and taking advantage of their errors, which came apace.

Toulouse, indeed, scored first through a Ramos penalty in the sixth minute but as soon as the hosts settled they were able to build the game-winning scores.

Sexton had levelled via a straightforward penalty before the recalled Lowe got their opening try in the 14th minute.

Leinster, now with 16 victories from their last 17 European games, worked their way over and back across the pitch and Sean Cronin's burst paved the way for the New Zealander, who still had work to do but, as we've come to expect, made the finish in the corner look easy.

Toulouse were too loose with their kicks and indeed some of their pack looked to be blowing hard in the early stages and when Scotland lock Richie Gray got caught with his hand in the ruck the visitors were down to 14 men.

Sexton kicked to the corner hoping to press their advantage from a maul; it worked with McGrath the man to touch down. Again, Sexton made no mistake off the tee.

However, the numerical advantage didn't last long as Robbie Henshaw was sin-binned for a cynical play close to the Leinster line; captain Jerome Kaino deciding that Ramos should take the points from the resulting penalty.

As they did on numerous occasions in last season's run, Leinster looked to have got a crucial score in first-half overtime.

Lowe crossed out wide for what appeared to be his second score but referee Wayne Barnes, after a TMO review, correctly ruled out the score for an obstruction by Jack Conan in the centre.

Toulouse then worked field position and could have reduced the margin but they were not sharp enough and Leinster, who lost Cronin to a leg injury in the 34th minute, took an 11-point lead in at the break.

The Top14 leaders did add another penalty just after the resumption but soon after Fardy returned from a blood substitution Leinster had try number three, the Australian stretching over close to the line.

Sexton, who was making his first appearance for the province this year, slotted over the conversion from the sideline.

Still, the four-time winners from France were not completely out of it and replacement Romain Ntamack tapped over another penalty on the hour mark after Sexton was penalised for a high tackle.

But Toulouse couldn't build on that and Sexton's last act of the game was a 66th-minute penalty that made it a three-score game, the Ireland out-half making way for Ross Byrne, who added a late penalty to kill off any lingering French hopes.

Leinster: Rob Kearney, Jordan Larmour, Garry Ringrose, Robbie Henshaw, James Lowe, Johnny Sexton (capt), Luke McGrath; Cian Healy, Sean Cronin, Tadhg Furlong, Devin Toner, James Ryan, Scott Fardy, Sean O'Brien, Jack Conan.

Replacements: James Tracy, Ed Byrne, Michael Bent, Caelan Doris, Max Deegan, Hugh O'Sullivan, Ross Byrne, Rory O'Loughlin.

Toulouse: Thomas Ramos, Yoann Huget, Sofiane Guitoune, Pita Ahki, Cheslin Kolbe, Antoine Dupont, Sébastien Bézy; Clément Castets, Peato Mauvaka, Charlie Faumuina, Richie Arnold, Richie Gray, Rynhardt Elstadt, Joe Tekori, Jerome Kaino (capt).

Replacements: Guillaume Marchand, Cyril Baille, Maks Van Dyk, Selevasio Tolofua, Piula Faasalele, Francois Cros, Romain Ntamack, Maxime Médard