Ireland’s Tommy Bowe celebrates his try against South Africa  with Conor Murray, Rhys Ruddock, Richardt Strauss and Tommy O’Donnell. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The Bounce of an Oval Shaped Football. “It may seem erratic, but it can be described by simple laws of physics. Projected at an oblique angle without(...)

Jonathan Sexton and Conor Murray tackle Jean de Villiers at the Aviva on Saturday. So formidable was the visitors’ reputation that it seemed beating them was even beyond St Jude. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

We’ve probably all tried the prayer in our time, usually highly inappropriately, like when our sporting case was especially desperate and our sporting(...)

 Jannie Du Plessis and Duane Vermeulen on the attack for South Africa during the  clash at the Aviva Stadium. Photo:  Patrick Bolger/Getty Images

Slow poison. That’s the Springbok name for their power, for their scrum, for their lineout maul and how, eventually, it seeps into your blood stream (...)

Ireland’s Rhys Ruddock makes a break for the tryline with the support of Paul O’Connell during Ireland’s victory over South Africa on Saturday. Photograph: Colm O’Neill/Inpho

Ireland 29 South Africa 15 After the biffing and boshing Ireland took in the second quarter, the 6-3 lead looked a little flimsy and there we(...)

Victor Matfield: one of the best lineout operators the world has ever seen. Photograph:Billy Stickland/Inpho

Two weeks ago I spoke of all things Bakkies Botha. Tomorrow he’s back, but before his arrival, we can feast on the brilliance contained within both nu(...)

Victor Matfield on Paul O’Connell: “”You can see he puts in a lot of hours in analysing, preparing and getting his whole unit ready for the weekend. So it is always tough going up against him.” Photograph: Hannah Peters/Getty Images

The importance of the lineout as a starter point in attack and also a key area when it comes to defence was at the nub of a question directed to South(...)

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(...)

Les Kiss: delighted to get the security in the long term and is focused on next year. Photograph: Inpho/Presseye/Jonathan Porter

In addition to confirming that Neil Doak will be Ulster’s head coach on a full-time basis, the IRFU has also announced that Les Kiss will resume his d(...)

Thomond Park in Limerick: venue for the 2017 Women’s  Rugby World Cup final? Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho.

Limerick is the favourite city to host the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2017. Having expressed interest in bringing the 2023 men’s tournament to Irelan(...)

Bath head coach Mike Ford: impressed by his young side’s determined performance. Photograph:  Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Bath coach Mike Ford felt yesterday’s tightly-contested 24-18 win at Wasps, which secured a place in the Amlin Challenge Cup final, will give h(...)