Wales number eight Taulupe Faletau shows the England defence a clean pair of heels at Twickenham. Photograph: Glyn Kirk/AFP photo

England 25 Wales 28 Sometimes a game actually lives up the hype, and in this instance that’s really saying something. After nearly two years of(...)

Anthony Watson goes over to score his and England’s  second try during the World Cup warm-up match against France at Twickenham. Photograph: David Davies/PA

England 19 France 14 Sam Burgess and Henry Slade played themselves into World Cup contention as England marked their 100th meeting with France with an(...)

 Marcelo Bosch of Saracens kicks the winning penalty during the European Rugby Champions Cup quarter-final against Racing Metro 92  at Stade Yves Du Manoir  in Paris. Photograph: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Racing Metro 11 Saracens 12Sporting history is not littered with too many examples of English teams being saved from oblivion by the boot of an Argent(...)

Back in harness: the return of Jonathan Sexton (centre, against Bayonne) to the European Champions Cup  should strengthen Racing Metro in Sunday’s quarter-final. Photograph: Iroziroz Gaizka/AFP/Getty Images

It’s a little surprising to be reminded that this is actually a meeting of the first and eighth seeds in the Champions Cup, with Racing advancing to (...)

Conor Murray: “You do have a game plan and, under any coach, there’s a game plan that you try and follow it as best you can.” Photograph: Inpho

The shadow of Joe Schmidt casts wide over the Ireland team but the Kiwi coach does not want his players to become automatons. Nor is the coach a black(...)

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell, playing his 99th international,  blocks down Ben Youngs of England. Photo: Inpho/Dan Sheridan 6:46

A final quarter dip by Ireland, or rally from England, may have taken some small sheen off this huge performance and victory, but their compelling sup(...)

Peter O’Mahony gets in ahead of Chris Robshaw in the lineout. Tommy O’Donnell had a hand in a complex move off a lineout shortly after coming on, showing the players’ knowledge of their roles. Photograph: James Crombie/INPHO 6:46

Whether you have talent or not, in business or in sport, the most important predictor of success the world over is grit. On 28 minutes Paul O’Connell (...)

Robbie Henshaw celebrates with Conor Murray after his try Photo: Inpho/James Crombie

Now England know it too. There’s nothing bite-sized or ephemeral about Robbie Henshaw. He’s inexperienced but not callow, green around the gills but (...)

 Billy Vunipola makes a break at the Aviva Stadium. James Crombie/Inpho

15 Alex GoodeHe carried more ball (18) than anyone else and made more metres (136) but struggled a bit in the air. Mike Brown’s absence was noticeable(...)

Ireland’s Robbie Henshaw  takes a high ball despite the attempts of England’s   Alex Goode to score a try during the Six Nations match at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph:  David Rogers/Getty Images 6:46

Ireland 19 England 9A strangely comprehensive dismissal of England, to end a four game losing streak dating back to 2011, this will be remembered as t(...)