The Azzurri stand for the Italian national anthem. Photograph: Michael Steele/Getty Images

You have to admire Warren Gatland’s chutzpah. No doubt he rubs up some people the wrong way, but this, of course, is also part of the plan. Unveiling (...)

Toulon’s  outhalf Nicolas Sanchez scores a try during the  Champions Cup match against Ulster  at the Stade Félix Mayol. Photograph: Boris Horvat/AFP/Getty Images

Toulon 60 Ulster 22Steffon Armitage scored a hat-trick as Toulon secured top spot in Champions Cup Pool 3 with a game to spare thanks to a 60-22 bonus(...)

Ulster coach Neil Doak: “We know that it’s not going to be easy this weekend.” Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Pride is to be tested in a match fraught with difficulty for Neil Doak’s Ulster side. Due to a combination of injury and the IRFU player welfare prog(...)

 Ireland’s Simon Zebo goes over for a tryagainst Australia in Dublin in November. Photograph: Colm O’Neill / Inpho

“You don’t have to be perfect. Your attitude and mental resolve have to be perfect. It’s very hard to play a perfect game of rugby but you have to st(...)

Leicester’s  Brad Thorn scores his side’s  first try during their European Rugby Champions Cup Pool 3 match against Toulon at Welford Road, Leicester, England. Photograph: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Leicester 25 Toulon 21 Leicester came from behind to defeat the European Cup holders and remain in a group that could still go one of four way(...)

Heyneke Meyer (Head Coach) of South Africa during the South African national rugby team training session at Cardiff Arms Park on Tuesday. Photograph: Steve Haag/Getty Images

South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer has challenged his players to prove their World Cup worth after being forced into changes for their final game of the(...)

Wales Warren Gatland before his side’s defeat to New Zealand at the Millennium Stadium. Wales also unhappy  first question in coach’s pre-match interview was whether he thought the haka gave New Zealand an unfair advantage. Photograph: Michael Steele/Getty Images

Wales have written to the BBC complaining about interviews conducted before and after the Test against New Zealand at the Millennium Stadium which cul(...)

Italy’s Quintin Geldenhuys tackles  South Africa’s Jean De Villiers   at the Euganeo Stadium in Padova. Photograph: Alessandro Garofalo / Reuters

Italy 6 South Africa 22 South Africa claimed an unconvincing 22-6 victory over Italy on Saturday with a late try from Bryan Habana adding some (...)

Ireland  coach Joe Schmidt speaks to his players before the game against South Africa.  Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

It’s possibly just as well that the Irish defensive system had its late malfunction to allow JP Pietersen in for South Africa’s consolation try. This (...)

Ireland’s Rhys Ruddock makes a break for the tryline with the support of Paul O’Connell during Ireland’s victory over South Africa on Saturday. Photograph: Colm O’Neill/Inpho

Ireland 29 South Africa 15 After the biffing and boshing Ireland took in the second quarter, the 6-3 lead looked a little flimsy and there we(...)