Of all the the emerging young players on the tour of Argentina, the one  who made the biggest impression on Joe Schmidt was flanker  Rhys Ruddock. Photograph:  Billy Stickland/Inpho

It was a small, relatively throwaway remark but it was worth noting nonetheless. “This was my first tour,” Joe Schmidt reminded us, and you forget, fo(...)

Simon Zebo breaks clear of the Argentina defence to score Ireland’s first try during the second Test in Tucumán, Argentina. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Argentina 17 Ireland 23: Ireland huffed and puffed in the clammy Tucumán air of north eastern Argentina to eventually complete a slightly laboured (...)

Ireland’s Paul O’Connell, Felix Jones and Robbie Diack after the after the win over Argentina at the Estadio Centenario, Resistencia. Photo: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Darren Cave was positively buzzing. This was his sixth Irish cap, and his fifth start, but unlike the previous four on North American tours while Ire(...)

Darren Cave makes a break against Argentina. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Argentina 17 Ireland 29 Ireland duly achieved their anticipated first test win in Argentina, if not quite in the manner Joe Schmidt and the Iri(...)

Ireland new cap Robbie Diack. Photograph:   Dan Sheridan/Inpho

By Gerry ThornleyAs expected, the South African-born Robbie Diack, who qualifies by residency, will make his debut for Ireland against Argentina on Sa(...)

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt at the announcement of the squad to tour Argentina next month. Photograph: Inpho

As ever with Joe Schmidt, there were perfectly rational arguments for all his selections yesterday and one can be absolutely sure the merits of every (...)

Leinster’s Ian Madigan bursts for the line to score the only try in  semi-final against Ulster on Saturday at the RDS. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Leinster 13 Ulster 9When you know how to win, you know how to win. Serial winners at the business end of the season, Leinster rolled up their sleeves (...)

As Leinster applied the finishing touches to their playing roster for next season without disclosing how long each player has signed for, Johnny Sexto(...)

Leinster’s Jack McGrath on is progression this season: “It’s about getting a run of games.” Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

At this time of year during the tsunami of end of year awards, some of the gong winners slip by unnoticed. This week Leinster loosehead prop Jack McGr(...)

 Gordon D’Arcy is one of a number of senior players who have signed new contracts with Leinster. Donall Farmer/Inpho

Leinster have confirmed that 21 players have signed new contracts to continue playing with the province next season and beyond and that Dudley born, (...)