Josh van der Flier runs in for his side’s try during the European Champions Cup game against Bath at The Recreation Ground. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Bath 19 Leinster 16 Rejuvenated by their Kiwi contingent, there was no shame in losing this game to a 77th minute penalty. Mentally and physica(...)

Charles Piutau scores in the dying minutes against Leinster in the European Champions Cup match at the RDS.Photograph:  Brian Lawless/PA Wire.

The stakes are high for Leinster today. Following on from their alarmingly limp defeat at home to Wasps last Sunday, another loss today in Bath would (...)

Leinster’s Dominic Ryan is tackled by Michael Tagicakibau of Scarlets during the Guinness Pro 12 game at the RDS. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Leinster 19 Scarlets 15 A beautifully mild night and not a breath of wind in the RDS warmed a thin enough crowd behind the goals in Dublin’s Ba(...)

Ireland’s Johnny Sexton is expected to start against Argentina. Photo: Getty Images

Irish team manager Mick Kearney has given the broadest hint yet that Johnny Sexton will be fit to start Ireland’s World Cup quarter-final against Arge(...)

France’s Mathieu Bastareaud and Yoann Maestri bring Ireland hooker Rory Best crashing to the Millennium Stadium turf. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

The risk is to list out all 23 Irish players and wax lyrical about their extraordinary performance. What harm? They were extraordinary and so too were(...)

Ireland’s Sean O’Brien gave a wonderfully bullish performance against France. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Leaders fall and others instantly rise up. Three, possibly four men lost, the Millennium became Seán O’Brien’s field, while Rory Best was only phenome(...)

Jared Payne will not  face France on Sunday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The French would have been mid-session this afternoon when word filtered through that Keith Earls will be wearing number 13 for Ireland on Sunday at t(...)

Ireland fans outside the Olympic Stadium in London ahead of the World Cup Pool D game  against Italy. Photograph:   James Crombie/Inpho

Long before the match had started the green shirts were bobbing around town. Two of them outside KFC on Leicester Square were tearing apart a spiced c(...)

Jack McGrath and Cian Healy have traded places – largely due to the latter’s injury profile and McGrath starts against Italy. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

There is always some tinkering, and it always seems to make sense. Besides the evolution of the new centre partnership, ironically blocked at t(...)

Mike Ross is vital to Ireland’s World Cup hopes despite his international career blooming late. Photograph: Getty

“Whenever the Springboks are under pressure coach Heyneke has got this story about how charcoal under big, big pressure becomes a diamond.” – Victor M(...)