Ireland supporters feel the strain during the World Cup Pool D game against Italy at the Olympic Stadium. Photograph:  James Crombie/Inpho

Well, aren’t we the neighbourly lot altogether? All this talk about the tournament losing its spark with England’s exit on Saturday night was hard to (...)

Robbie Henshaw during a gym session at  Surrey Sports Park in Guildford on Tuesday. The Connacht centre is in line to make his World Cup debut against Italy next Sunday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Rob Kearney could conceivably play against Italy on Sunday but his glute strain is being managed with a view to a full recovery ahead of the French ga(...)

Rob Kearney scores Ireland’s fifth try during the Rugby World Cup match against Romania at Wembley Stadium in London. Photograph: David Davies/PA

There’s no point pussy-footing around this, or pussy-footing around the language: TV3’s World Cup panel needs a shit-stirrer. Don’t get me wrong. In m(...)

Ian Madigan may have to feature at scrum half with Ireland just bringing Eoin Reddan and Conor Murray to the World Cup. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Joe Schmidt admitted it was a calculated risk. Isaac Boss and Kieron Marmion stay at home with Ian Madigan prepared to slot in at scrumhalf if the (...)

Conor Murray is confident going into his second World Cup. “We are in a very good place and I don’t think we should be shying away from that,” he says. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

This time four years ago it’s still remarkable to think that Conor Murray went into Ireland’s World Cup preparatory programme as fifth choice scrumhal(...)

TV3 rugby panelist and former Ireland captain Keith Wood. The station has secured the rights to the Rugby World Cup. Photograph: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

It seems a little early for autumn launches but yesterday TV3 set out its stall to advertisers. “We’re borrowing from the American model of ‘upfronts(...)

Joe Schmidt says the experience of Less Kiss will be invaluable when selecting Ireland’s squad for this year’s World Cup. Photograph: Inpho

In the aftermath of the disappointing Irish performance and defeat to the Barbarians in Thomond Park on Thursday night, Joe Schmidt gave little pointe(...)

 Ruan Pienaar leaves the pitch with his dejected team-mates after the defeat to Glasgow in Scotstoun. Photograph: Darren Kidd/Presseye/Inpho

Ruan Pienaar seems to have been on the rugby treadmill for about five years now without a break, ever since joining Ulster five years ag o. If ever a(...)

Scrumhalf Peter Stringer scores one of Bath’s seven tries  despite the tackle of Leicester’s Tommy Bell during their Aviva Premiership semi-final at the Recreation Ground. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Bath captain Stuart Hooper has hailed the club’s mercurial midfield trio as they put on another masterful display which puts the team one win away fro(...)

Peter Stringer hopes to finish the season on a high with Bath in the Aviva Premiership. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Enjoying a fruitful Indian summer to his career and one game away from a Premiership final, Peter Stringer remains as “excited” as ever about the pro(...)