Ireland’s Jonathan Sexton:  resigned to being out of action until at least February 14th, the day Ireland play France at the Aviva Stadium. Photo: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Ireland will have to begin the defence of their Six Nations crown against Italy without Johnny Sexton, who is resigned to being out of action until F(...)

Richardt Strauss, who scored for Ireland in their victory over Georgia, faces a race to be fit for Leinster’s game against Pro 12 leaders ospreys on Saturday

Leinster will be without Luke Fitzgerald and Kevin McLaughlin for Saturday’s home game against Pro 12 leaders Ospreys. McLaughlin was forced to come o(...)

 Leinster’s Darragh Fanning scores his first  try against Treviso. Photograph: Giuseppe Fama / Inpho

Treviso 24 Leinster 24The physical aches and pains will probably pale when weighed against the mental anguish that the Leinster players will feel in t(...)

Ospreys outhalf  Dan Biggar kicked 17 points against Treviso  at Liberty Stadium in Swansea. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Toulon 28 Scarlets 18Toulon took over at the top of Pool 3 with a hard-fought win over Scarlets at Stade Felix Mayol. Tries from Matt Giteau, Maxime M(...)

 Shane Delahunt  will start for Connacht against Treviso. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

In the same week that he signed a Connacht Academy contract, 20-year-old Shane Delahunt has been handed his first Pro 12 start at hooker after coming (...)

 Anthony Foley: ill-timed and unwanted episode for Anthony Foley and his newly assembled, indigenous coaching staff. Photograph: James Crombie

An Irish four-timer gives the embryonic Guinness Pro12 table a more positive perspective, after Connacht had been the only winners of the quartet on t(...)

Munster coach Anthony Foley has rung  the changes for this week’s match against Treviso. Photograph:  Ryan Byrne / Inpho

Ireland and Lions lock Paul O’Connell, who was expected to make his return to Munster this week, was a late withdrawl from the squad, who flew to Ital(...)

Munster head coach Anthony Foley: “If a player has committed to us in terms of contract we need to make sure we are looking after this player as well.” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Tyler Bleyendaal is not a piece of meat. The Cabtabrian is, however, a professional rugby player with a serious neck injury. Last night Munster coach (...)

Brian O’Driscoll returns to  the Leinster starting XV to face Treviso at the RDS. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/ Inpho

Leinster have made two changes to the side that lost to Ospreys last week ahead of Friday afternoon’s RaboDirect Pro12 meeting with Treviso at (...)

Munster’s Simon Zebo makes the hard yards in Saturday night’s victory over Treiso in the Pro12 game at Thomond Park. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Munster 14 (Tries: Earls, Downey. Cons: Hanrahan2), Tr(...)