Ireland players line up for the anthems ahead of the Six Nations international rugby union match between Scotland and Ireland - Six have been selected for our Six Nations team of the tournament. Photograph: Ian  MacNicol/Getty Images 9:27

15 Rob Kearney (Ireland):Leigh Halfpenny’s goal-kicking could give him the nod again. Stuart Hogg was electric and carried for 100 more metres. But Ke(...)

Samuel Vunisa will shift from openside flanker to number eight to cover for the injured Sergio Parisse in Italy’s team to play Wales in Rome on Saturday. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Italy captain Sergio Parisse has been ruled out of Saturday’s Six Nations clash against Wales at the Stadio Olimpico.In a hammer-blow for the Azzurri(...)

It is believed the French are considering promoting Morgan Parra at scrumhalf to start against Ireland at The Aviva Stadium on Saturday. Photograph: Getty Images. 3:25

No games seem set to define Ireland’s calendar year, and perhaps even the Joe Schmidt era, more than the meetings with the French. It was in Paris las(...)

 Tommy O’Donnell of Ireland scores the second try against   Italy at   the Stadio Olimpico   in Rome. Photograph: Jamie McDonald/Getty Images 2:48

Italy 3 Ireland 26 Another performance from Joe Schmidt’s utterly efficient Ireland that leaves us knowing so much more is to still come. A(...)

The Azzurri stand for the Italian national anthem. Photograph: Michael Steele/Getty Images

You have to admire Warren Gatland’s chutzpah. No doubt he rubs up some people the wrong way, but this, of course, is also part of the plan. Unveiling (...)

Leicester Tigers’ Graham Kitchener (right) goes over to score the opening try despite the efforts of Ulster’s Rory Best (left) during the European Rugby Champions Cup match at Welford Road, Leicester. Photograph: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

Leicester 25 Ulster 18Ulster left themselves a mountain to climb at Welford Road and ultimately fell short against Leicester Tigers, who put indiffere(...)

Leonardo Ghiraldini: one of several Italian internationals set to leave Treviso at the end of the season. Photograph: Inpho.

Despite their own threats to the contrary and the proposal to form a new regional franchise in their stead, none too surprisingly it transpires(...)

Scotland’s Alex Dunbar is brought down by Italy’s Joshua Furno (top)during the Six Nations match at the Stadio Olympico in Rome. Furno’s move from the secondrow to six for tomorrow’s match  in Dublin will be of huge benefit to Ireland. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA

Behemoth Manu Tuilagi’s doesn’t make England’s squad for the Welsh visit to Twickenham this Sunday so he may well tog out in Italy’s Stadio Oli(...)

Ireland’s Brian O'Driscoll sits on the sideline after being sin-binned in the first half of the game against Italy   at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Ireland succumbed to a first defeat to Italy in the Six Nations after an indisciplined afternoon at the Stadio Olimpico when the injury jinx th(...)

Italy’s head coach Jacques Brunel.

Castrogiovanni, whose mooted move from Leicester Tigers to Toulon has seemingly fallen through, was forced off in the first half at Twic(...)