Leinster’s Jonathan Sexton appeals to the referee during the European Champions Cup defeat to Wasps at the RDS. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

Leinster 6 Wasps 33 Slow, painful season coming. Not even in Leo Cullen’s worst nightmare could he have foreseen this record home European defe(...)

Timely: this autumn’s supermoons and all the talk of life on Mars give a topical edge to I Was There’s distillation of evolution. Illustration: Michael Viney

How do you inspire an eight-year-old, say, with young delight in sharing with everything else on Earth, atoms born of the Big Bang, 14 billion years a(...)

Sam Burgess: returning to South Sydney Rabbitohs on lucrative contract. Photograph: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Was Sam Burgess chased out of rugby union? And will there ever be a lonelier World Cup career in English rugby union lore? Maybe the blurry memory (...)

Sam Burgess returned to training with his club, Bath on Monday. Photograph: Martin Rickett/PA

England centre Sam Burgess has attended training at Bath today amid speculation he could return to rugby league, the Aviva Premiership club have anno(...)

Ireland props Nathan White and Tadgh  Furlong during a training session at   St George’s Park in Staffordshire. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Four years ago, as Ireland were progressing through their pool in the World Cup, Tadgh Furlong was watching their games from home, having just complet(...)

Ireland centre Jared Payne, seen here holding off George Ford at Twickenham, has become a pivotal part of the Ireland midfield. Photograph: Clive Rose/Getty Images

It’s not Jared Payne’s fault that he’s the one filling a position previously held by Ireland’s greatest ever player. Identified in 2010, recruited a (...)

Luke Fitzgerald is set to start alongside Jared Payne in Ireland’s midfield for the opening World Cup game against Canada. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

The severity of Robbie Henshaw’s injury should become apparent at Thursday’s team announcement but the Connacht centre has not made Joe Schmidt’s open(...)

The 2011 Rugby World Cup semi-final defeat to Wales was Ronan O’gara’s last appearance for Ireland. Photograph: Getty

“It was an episode which has burned so deep into the heart and mind of Ireland that it is not yet possible for the historian to approach it with th(...)

Cian Healy underwent an operation to his neck at the end of last season and will be keen to get game time ahead of the World Cup. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Leinster will oblige Joe Schmidt this week should the Ireland coach asked the province to accommodate Cian Healy in their second match of their Pro12(...)

Gordon D’Arcy: “You stay at the table long enough and eventually you don’t get picked. That’s happened to me now. I’m very sanguine and relaxed about it all.” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

It ended where it began. The 35-year-old former rugby professional lingered in the doorway of Bective Rangers clubhouse, decked out in new Leinster(...)