Rhys Ruddock suffered injury against Harlequins in the Champions Cup. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Rhys Ruddock’s truncated season has been ended by a recurrence of the arm problem which has sidelined him for all but two games since mid-December.(...)

Paul O’Connell making another of those unglamorous carries that are the hallmark of his unselfishness and work ethic. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

When Joe Schmidt said on Saturday that Paul O’Connell had taken the week by the scruff of the neck, I wasn’t surprised at all. I couldn’t help smiling(...)

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(...)

Luke Fitzgerald takes on the Scotland defence at Murrayfield, Edinburgh. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

There are so many moments worth lingering over from Saturday, March 21st. A forever day with a legacy already seeping into the generation of wide-eye(...)

Jonathan Sexton celebrates with Jared Payne after the Ulster back scored his first try for Ireland. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho 2:49

The Sydney Morning Herald website chose not to put their own twist on the headline of the syndicated copy from England’s Daily Telegraph, that summed(...)

Paul O’Connell makes a flying tackle on Scotland’s Stuart Hogg. It almost goes without saying that the captain was immense leading from the front in his inimitable. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho 9:27

The mind, and specifically the mindset of a team, is a curious thing indeed. It is extremely hard to imagine Ireland would have played with such posit(...)

Ireland number eight Jamie Heaslip makes the crucial try-saving tackle as Scotland fullback  Stuart Hogg loses possession and knocks on going over the try line during the Six Nations game at Murrayfield. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho 9:27

It was a day of tiny margins where fate smiled on Ireland. A late try in Rome punctured rampant Welsh enthusiasm and despite missing two eminently kic(...)

Tommy Bowe:  He worked extremely hard all afternoon and made some excellent breaks for a 92-metre haul. A couple of offloads didn’t go to a teammate but that doesn’t take away from the impact he made. Rating: 7

15 Rob KearneyA little bit of a mixed bag, a fumble for Scotland’s try, a couple of sliced kicks but overall his contribution was on the positive side(...)

Robbie Henshaw, Jared Payne, Luke Fitzgerald, Rob Kearney and Jonathon Sexton at an Ireland squad training session at Carton House, Co Wicklow. Photograph: Inpho

Ireland 15 Rob Kearney Age: 28 Height: 1.85m (6’1”) Weight: 95kg (15st) Caps: 61 Tries: 10 (1 conversion) After a few early errors, he was one of the(...)

Referee Wayne Barnes awards a penalty to Wales during the final moments of the game at the Millennium Stadium. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Confusion reigned as to the reason for the fateful last penalty of the match at a Welsh scrum at the Millennium Stadium last Saturday. Players, manag(...)