I've had my annual Drogheda-Dublin point-to-point loaded on to a Leap card for several years (I'd guess the last 4). Prior to that I had an Irish Rail smart card with the ticket details printed on it, and prior to that a plastic magnetic card.
As you say, the Leap card doesn't have the station names or validity date printed anywhere. The other problem with it is that revenue protection staff only have a scanner that tells them whether I tagged on or not. This means that the Leap card isn't really suitable if one of the endpoints doesn't have a tag-on/tag-off point, which to the best of my knowledge is still the case in many rural stations.
Up to now, the Irish Rail smart cards have always been an option if you regularly use a station without a reader. If Irish Rail are taking away this option, they need to offer an acceptable alternative for people using stations without smartcard readers.
This issue isn't limited to cross-border passengers.