Australia’s David Pocock is one of the best operators at the breakdown in world rugby. Saeed Khan/AFP/Getty Images

With a slight lull in play this weekend I decided to consult the rule book or should I say ‘World Rugby laws of the game’. With 48 World Cup matches a(...)

Irish captain Sean O’Brien presents the ball during Ireland’s Rugby World Cup warm-up match against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin, on Saturday.  Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho 8:14

Two warm-up wins with very close to 100 per cent set piece and eight tries scored (five from backs!) is a very happy return from the 34 players bloode(...)

Ireland’s Chris Henry:   “Watch his early adoption of suitable body position as he puts himself into the ideal entry point over the ball.” Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho 2:30

Kilkenny’s extraordinary methodology makes hurling a super team sport; so too Joe Schmidt’s rugby but for me it’s off shore sailing epitomised by t(...)

Jamie Heaslip of Ireland charges upfield during the International match between Wales and Ireland at the Millennium Stadium. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

So Pool D runners-up will be playing New Zealand on 17th October. Ahhh. But Pool D winners will have the reward of Argentina a day later. Neither Irel(...)

Joe Schmidt with Simon Zebo: ‘Has Zebo  finally learned that Schmidt requires a different feedback in order to get into his starting teams? If he has, then climb on board.’ Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Over the summer I’ve been preoccupied with the OODA Loop. Maybe it’s the various challenges business continually presents that’s encouraged me to O(...)

Glasgow’s Niko Matawalu takes on Ulster’s Jared Payne.  Ian Keatley must recognise Glasgow’s varied set up and create the opportunity to expose Matawalu. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Last weekend provided lots of talking points for all three provinces and Glasgow’s Fijian right wing Nikola Matawalu was right up there. Yes many will(...)

Lansdowne captain Ron Boucher leads the celebrations after victory over Clontarf in the Ulster Bank League Division 1A Final at the  Aviva Stadium.  Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

While sitting in O’Reilly Hall last Saturday night at the UCD Rugby Club Dinner I couldn’t help but lose myself in elite club rugby once more. On th(...)

St Mary’s captain Trevor Brennan with his son Daniel after defeating Lansdowne in the club final in 2000. Photograph: INPHO/Billy Stickland

This weekend 15 years ago I played in arguably the last great all-Ireland club final. There were four British and Irish Lions, internationals, and out(...)

Paddy Jackson in action against Leinster’s Isaac Boss. Ulster’s outhalf is increasingly dangerous in the opposition’s defensive zone. Photo: Darren Kidd/Presseye/Inpho

The number two outhalf in Ireland is playing tomorrow at the Kingspan Stadium, Belfast. With regard to the question of Ireland’s potential in the upco(...)

Connacht’s Denis Buckley tries to get away from Ulster’s Callum Black. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Much debate abounds regarding our provinces, especially with two French sides in tomorrow’s European Rugby Champions Cup final. Watching the Aviva (...)