Rob Kearney is aware of the task facing Leinster. “Bath are a quality side. What they did to Toulouse was the performance of the season in the European Cup,” he says. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

History will judge this generation of Irish rugby players well and few more so than Rob Kearney. He is the only player to have started all five games (...)

Jonathan Joseph burst onto the international scene in this season’s Six Nations Championship, finishing it as the top try scorer. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Some sporting cross-pollination as a child is often the genesis for exceptional athletes. Jonathan Joseph sashayed his way through the Six Nations Cha(...)

People throw white roses on to the coffin containing the remains of King Richard III as it is carried in procession for interment at Leicester Cathedral on March 22, 2015 in Leicester, England. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

The mortal remains of Richard III have returned to Bosworth where he fell in battle 530 years ago.In a colourful ceremony heavy with symbolism atop Am(...)

French referee  Jerome Garces:  Given Ireland’s penchant for competing in the air, the recent decisions by Garces may haunt them in Edinburgh.  Photograph: Inpho

A final day at the Six Nations where all three matches are intertwined, the possible king makers are Kiwi, French and Welsh. A penalty when the scr(...)

Manchester United defender Jonny Evans has denied spitting at Newcastle forward Papiss Cisse. Photograph: Richard Sellers/PA Wire.

Manchester United defender Jonny Evans has pleaded not guilty to spitting at Newcastle striker Papiss Cisse and will have his case heard on Friday nig(...)

Munster’s Alan Quinlan wrestles with Leicester’s  Neil Back during the 2002 Heineken Cup final at the  Millennium Stadium in  Cardiff. Photo:  David Rogers/Getty Image

Rugby can sometimes contrive the Hollywood ending. And so it is the next time Neil Back and Peter Stringer line out, they may be chumming up to each (...)

Mike Brown of England clashes with Andrea Masi of Italy during their Six Nations match at Twickenham. The fullback has not fully recovered from his head injury. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

The odds on Mike Brown featuring in England’s key Six Nations game against Ireland on Sunday are lengthening after the fullback suffered a setback in(...)

Ulster outhalf Ian Humphreys says province are determined to win the block of four matches during the Six Nations. Photograph: Darren Griffiths/Presseye/Inpho

Ulster initially suffered the January blues. They lost a Guinness Pro12 match to Leinster and then, despite a defiant and gutsy four-try salvo against(...)

Aston Villa have sacked   manager Paul Lambert. Photograph: Oli scarff /  AFP/  Getty Images

Paul Lambert has been sacked by Aston Villa after a disastrous run of results that has seen the club slip into the relegation zone. Lambert, who was a(...)

England’s Chris Robshaw:  the 28-year-old is now an automatic pick for England. Photo: Joe Giddens/PA

England are determined not to look beyond Italy this Saturday, but their Six Nations victory over Wales has already convinced Stuart Lancaster to ano(...)