Paul O’Connell is stretchered off at half-time after receiving a serious leg injury during Ireland’s pool match against France at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff. Photograph: David Davies/PA Wire.

Amid the prevailing end-of-year doom and gloom, lest we forget that was the year that produced the greatest World Cup ever – as well as Super Saturday(...)

Heyneke Meyer is to stand down as coach of South Africa. Photograph: Afp

Heyneke Meyer has decided to stand down as South Africa coach. The South African Rugby Union announced on its official Twitter feed that Meyer had ad(...)

South Africa’s Heyneke Meyer has said he be a “total nutter” to carry on as head coach. Photograph: Reuters

World Cup 3rd/4th Play-off Argentina v South Africa Olympic Stadium, 8.0 TV3, ITV The Springboks squad have thrown their weight behind (...)

Like all Michael Cheika’s teams, Australia were way too streetwise, together and opportunistic for Argentina. Photograph: Dylan Martinez/Reuters

Some of the previously optimistic Irish fans who had bought tickets for the semi-finals made the trek to Twickenham over the weekend. There were clear(...)

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen: “Leadership  . . . is a learning skill. Self-belief is a massive thing.” Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images

By the end, it was all black alright. Seemingly half of New Zealand had travelled over, and as Twickenham was engulfed in rain and a black sky more li(...)

New Zealand’s winger Nehe Milner-Skudder  evades South Africa’s flanker François Louw  during the  semi-final  of the 2015 Rugby World Cup  at Twickenham on Saturday. Photograph: Franck Fife/AFP/Getty Images

“It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.” – Edmund Hillary, the first man to conquer Met Everest For the ages. The greatest team of all time (...)

South Africa’s lock Lood de Jager  is tackled Dan Carter, Owen Franks  and New Zealand captain Richie McCaw  during the  Rugby World Cup semi-final a Twickenham. Photograph: Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images

It had been an absorbing, brutally physical encounter in sharp contrast to the often bitter and violent rivalry of decades gone by. Yet as befits the (...)

New Zealand’s Jerome Kaino scores his side’s first try during the Rugby World Cup semi-final against South Africa at Twickenham. Photograph:  David Davies/PA

New Zealand 20 South Africa 18 “It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves,” - Edmund Hillary For the ages. The greatest team of all time met an(...)

Schalk Burger is looking forward to Saturday’s World Cup semi-final against New Zealand, two years on from contracting bacterial meningitis. Photograph: PA

No player can convey the Springboks’ uber relaxed mood on the eve of their potentially seismic World Cup semi-final with the All Blacks than Schalk Bu(...)

Daniel Carter passes the ball during a New Zealand training session at London Irish in London. Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images United Kingdom. Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images

There’s an aura about them alright. When the All Blacks make a team announcement it’s big news, and Steve Hansen was in his element when a huge media (...)