Paul O’Connell  in Twickenham: “For me when you play England, you always think of the size of the players.” Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

This almost feels a little like the start of the World Cup. It’s Twickenham, all the squads have been named and England kick off the global, four-y(...)

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell during  the  Captain’s Run at  Twickenham on Friday. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

The sense that the build-up to the World Cup has been intensified this week was underlined by Paul O’Connell after Ireland’s Captain’s Run at Twickenh(...)

 Simon Zebo is tackled by Scotland’s Seán Lamont during their World Cup Warm-Up match atthe  Aviva Stadium, Dublin. Photograph: Inpho

Devin Toner, Paul O’Connell, Iain Henderson, Seán O’Brien and Jamie Heaslip are currently my starting 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 against France on October 11th.(...)

Paul O’Connell: optimistic about Amsterdam’s ability to become a start-up hub.

Silicon Valley has long been considered sacred ground for start-ups but increasingly it has plenty of rivals. Cities across the globe are all worki(...)

Coach Joe Schmidt will confirm team selection at lunchtime on Thursday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Joe Schmidt is expected to send over a strong Irish side for Saturday’s last of four warm-up games before the World Cup, against the hosts, England(...)

Paul O’Connell tries to hold up a Welsh maul at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

The theatre superstition has it that a bad dress rehearsal makes for a good opening night, so Joe Schmidt and the Irish squad will not be panicking af(...)

Darren Cave is set to provide midfield cover for Robbie Henshaw and Jared Payneat the World Cup. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

As has been the case with other World Cup squad selections, there was always going to be some risk-taking when Joe Schmidt and his coaches finalise(...)

Justin Tipuric is tackled by Ireland’s Iain Henderson on Saturday. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

On Friday I felt Wales required a bigger performance than Ireland. That certainly arrived and that Ireland couldn’t dictate as they did in Cardiff is (...)

Paul O’Connell speaks to the team before the Wales game. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Rob Kearney 7 And he’s only getting started. Didn’t really attack the Welsh like he would in a full metal jacket affair but was his usual dominant sel(...)

Ireland fullback Rob Kearney rises high to claim the ball ahead of Wales outhalf Dan Biggar at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Fittingly the heavens opened for the last quarter, which suited the team in front, which was deservedly Wales. And so it was that the Red Dragonhood r(...)