Keith Earls at a Munster squad training session at University of Limerick, Limerick in October. The winger has never played under Joe Schmidt for Ireland. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Keith Earls’ international injury nightmare could be about to come to an end with the Munster winger on track for a January return which could leave (...)

Paul O’Connell leads the captain’s run at the Aviva Stadium ahead of the game against Australia on Saturday. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Paul O’Connell has claimed “there’s been nothing done on my behalf” in the wake of rumours linking him with a move to France after next year’s World C(...)

The headline reads; ‘Connell and Ashton for France?’. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

French newspaper Midi Olympique has a headshot of Ireland captain Paul O’Connell beneath the front page masthead under a headline ‘Connell and Ashton (...)

Munster’s Robin Copeland believes it “takes a while to settle into a new club. It is new moves, new players, new everything.” Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

As ever with these little Leinster-Munster encounters, there are a host of intriguing sub-plots and not least of these will be Robin Copeland coming u(...)

Peter Stringer of Bath dives over for a try during the Aviva Premiership match between Bath and Leicester Tigers on Saturday. Photograph:  David Rogers/Getty Images

John O’SullivanThere’s no doubting the performance of the day in the Aviva English Premiership belonged to Bath as they thumped the Leicester Tigers b(...)

 Pau’s new signing James Coughlan: “We both kind of said ‘if we don’t go now, we’ll never go’.” Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho.

The IRFU have succeeded where their Welsh, Scottish and Italian counterparts have largely failed in keeping all their front-line players at home. Even(...)

Aurillac head coach Jeremy Davidson: “I’m looking forward to seeing him [Eddie O’Sullivan]. I left him a message when he was appointed to wish him all the best.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

French club rugby is not noted for the presence of non-French coaches, yet while Bernard Jackman coaches Grenoble in the Top 14, this weekend’s openin(...)

Stuart Hogg of Glasgow Warriors has been dropped from the Glasgow Warriors’ squad for the Pro12 final against Leinster at the RDS on Saturday. Photograph: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images.

Stuart Hogg will not play any part in Saturday’s Pro12 final at the RDS. The Scotland fullback has been excluded from Gregor Townsend’s squad as he ac(...)

James Coughlan will leave Munster a year early to join French side Pau. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Munster backrow James Coughlan has confirmed that he will leave the province this summer and move abroad a year ahead of the end of his contract.Muns(...)

Conor Murray and Ian Keatley receive instructions from Munster head coach Rob Penney during training this week. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Munster have drafted Conor Murray, Keith Earls, CJ Stander and BJ Botha back into their starting line-up for tomorrow night’s Rabo Pro12 semi-final in(...)