Johnny Sexton was named man of the match in Ireland’s 18-11 Six nations win over France at the Aviva Stadium.  (Photograph: REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton)

Ireland player ratingsRob Kearney 7Made nine carries for 53 metres. A jarring, wrap tackle on Scott Spedding earned an important 24th minute penalty a(...)

France coach Philippe Saint-Andre. “He may  be a practical coach but the French media stone him for his inability to settle upon a team.” Photograph: Gonzalo Fuentes/Reuters

Only place to begin is at the end of Paris. When the Ides of March were overcome.Sexton had been carted off (not an omen just another reason to avoid (...)

 Ben Te’o gets a long overdue fourth appearance for Leinster against the Dragons on Sunday, having so far only played 87 minutes of rugby union. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

A non-televised Pro 12 game in Dublin sneaks under the radar but there’s plenty of external interest in those involved.There are rumours that Wallab(...)

Sean O’Brien was forced to withdraw from the Ireland team ahead of the 26-3 victory over Italy in Rome after damaging his hamstring during the warm-up and is now a doubt for Saturday’s fixture against France at the Aviva Stadium. (Photograph: INPHO/Dan Sheridan)

Seán O’Brien’s involvement against France next Saturday remains in doubt after damaging his hamstring while warming up ahead of Ireland’s 26-3 trimmin(...)

Outhalf  Ian Keatley solid after a nervy start in Rome.  Photograph:  Jamie McDonald/Getty Images 2:48

Ireland’s victory in Rome will help to assuage the disappointment of an imprecise performance that was long on perspiration but short on inspiration(...)

 Tommy O’Donnell of Ireland scores the second try against   Italy at   the Stadio Olimpico   in Rome. Photograph: Jamie McDonald/Getty Images 2:48

Italy 3 Ireland 26 Another performance from Joe Schmidt’s utterly efficient Ireland that leaves us knowing so much more is to still come. A(...)

“Two hours each morning, two hours each evening, ‘three on, one off, double splits’. The gym was the one place I had control. I didn’t have to spea(...)

Ireland’s Conor Murray in action: the scrumhalf has  been passed fit to play against Italy in Rome this Saturday. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Conor Murray and Dave Kearney, two constants in last season’s victorious Six Nations side, have been passed fit to play against Italy in Rome this Sat(...)

Fergus McFadden scores Leinster’s opening try in the European Champions Cup Pool Two game against Wasps at the  Ricoh Arena in Coventry. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Wasps 20 Leinster 20Having led 20-6 lead at half-time, at which point they should have been out of sight, Leinster let slip that winning platform to s(...)

Rarely has the Irish presence at Europe’s top table been so imperilled. As the last Irish team standing in the European Champions Cup, it is up to Lei(...)