Stuart McCloskey: the highly-rated Ulster centre will be in action for Emerging Ireland against Russia. Photo: Kevin Boyes/Inpho/Presseye

Ireland’s participation in the IRB Nations Cup – they played in the Tiblisi Cup last year – is fundamentally to secure a competitive outlet for what m(...)

Zebre’s George Biagi is tackled by  Leinster’s Shane Jennings. Photograph: Nando Vescusio/Inpho

Zebre 8 Leinster 31 Leinster rounded off a largely positive weekend for Irish rugby in Parma yesterday where they saw off Zebre to commandeer second p(...)

 Declan Fitzpatrick will prove a formidable presence in the  Ulster  front row for tonight’s clash with Leinster. Photograph: Darren Kidd/Pressey/Inpho

Leinster losing three in games in succession is hard to imagine. They may be blessed by the lack of artillery in the Red Hand brigade, seeking to aven(...)

Leinster’s Shane Jennings will lead the charge into the Dragons’ den at Rodney Parade.

Matt O’Connor will know more about his squad, individually and collectively, by the time the final whistle blows tonight. For the Leinster coach this (...)

 Leinster’s Jimmy Gopperth on the attack against Ulster. Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Shane Jennings leads a young Leinster side for tomorrow night’s pre-season friendly match against Northampton Saints at Donnybrook (7.0).Darren Hudso(...)

A general view of a revamped Ravenhill where Ulster beat Leinster in a pre-season friendly.  Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Ulster 21 Leinster 19: As is the way with pre-season friendlies the result was always secondary to what was essentially a hit-out for the expanded an(...)