Dylan Hartley: “I am me. It’s there in print for you to see what I’ve done wrong and what I’ve been guilty of.” Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Whether England succeed or fail under their new captain, Dylan Hartley, they are entering a very different style of regime. Eddie Jones has already s(...)

Clermont’s Viktor Kolelishvili in action against the Ospreys. The Georgian backrow has been suspended for 14 weeks for pushing referee Wayne Barnes. Photograph: David Davies/PA Wire

‘You don’t ever, ever f****** touch a referee, ever. You’re done here.” So said Ultimate Fighting Championship supremo Dana White in June 2014 after o(...)

Clermont Auvergne’s Georgian backrow Viktor Kolelishvili has been suspended for 14 weeks for pushing referee Wayne Barnes during last Friday’s Champio(...)

 Luke Marshall is one of several players to impress during Ulster’s recent run, including back-to-back wins over Toulouse. Photograph: Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty

Rarely have the interprovincial festive derbies found Munster and Leinster at such a low ebb. Time was, and perhaps still is to a degree, when this w(...)

Johnny Sexton tackles Ma’a Nonu during Leinster’s Champions Cup defeat to Toulon at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Inpho

Leinster 16 Toulon 20 The other week Leinster had a bad time. Thrashed about on the French Riviera, a mere six days later they morphed into enforcers(...)

Jack McGrath has been favoured in the Leinster frontrow to Cian Healy, who will be on the bench. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

As dead rubbers go, this is not actually a dud. For starters, technically speaking Leinster’s hopes of advancing to the knockout stages for the 11th t(...)

Australian referee Angus Gardner will take charge of Ireland’s Six Nations match at home to Italy on March 12th. Photograph: Jason Oxenham/Getty Images

Former Munster player John Lacey and George Clancy are Ireland’s sole referee representatives in the 2016 Six Nations Championship, which gets underwa(...)

  New Zealand duo Daniel Carter and Richie McCaw chat during the Rugby World Cup final against Australia at Twickenham. Photograph: Stefan Wermuth/Reuters

In the end it was all about McCaw and Carter. Never again will we see their likes. Certainly not at the same time. Before Carter grabbed hold of this (...)

Richie McCaw and Dan Carter hold aloft the Webb Ellis Cup after New Zealand’s win over Australia in the World Cup Final at Twickenham. Photograph:      Stu Forster/Getty Images

New Zealand 34 Australia 17 Simply the best, and perhaps now the best of all time. In any event, it’s hard to argue a case for a better team in(...)

Welsh  referee Nigel Owens, seen here officiating the Rugby World Cup quarter-final game between New Zealand and France, will take charge of Saturday’s final between the All Blacks and Australia. Photograph:  Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

Welshman Nigel Owens has been appointed to referee next Saturday’s Rugby World Cup final between New Zealand and Australia at Twickenham, while Irelan(...)