Ireland’s Robbie Henshaw  passes the ball to his centre partner Keith Earls during their Pool D match against Italy at the Olympic Stadium. Photograph: Getty Images

Ireland take on Italy in the third game of their Rugby World Cup pool on Sunday afternoon - hoping to continue their 100 per cent record, and positive(...)

Ireland captain Paul O’Connell is braced for a physical encounter with italy at the Olympic Stadium on Sunday. Photograph: Inpho

Ireland expect to be “battered up front and pushed to the limit” by Italy in Sunday’s crucial World Cup encounter at London’s Olympic Stadium. Captain(...)

Italy’s Sergio Parisse has won his fitness race ahead of his side’s clash with Ireland at the Olympic Stadium. Photograph: Afp

Sergio Parisse has won his fitness battle for Sunday’s crucial World Cup clash with Ireland. The talismanic captain has finally beaten the calf haema(...)

Captain Paul O’Connell and Peter O’Mahony during Ireland squad training at Surrey Sports Park in Guildford, Surrey. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The odds on Ireland delivering a knockout blow to Italy and thus setting up a toe-to-toe pool decider against France in Cardiff a week hence have, if (...)

Italian scrumhalf Edoardo Gori did test the Canadian fringe but I fancy Ireland will not leak as easily.  Photograph: Paul Ellis/AFP 5:55

For the third weekend running events in other grounds are tearing my attention from Ireland where my PhD is progressing on English decision- making(...)

Robbie Henshaw is in line to make his World Cup debut in the Pool D game against Italy on Sunday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho 7:17

Akin to other head coaches who have a clear selection strategy in this World Cup, although not all, Joe Schmidt is expected to largely revert to th(...)

Italy fullback Luke McLean: “We realise that we will have to be virtually perfect if we’re to have any chance to come away with a win.” Photo: Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty

Luke McLean, Italy’s long-since naturalised Aussie who has played for his adopted country 72 times, is one of only four players in their squad born(...)

Italy backrow Sergio Parisse takes part in a team training session at Cobham RFC, London. Photograph: Getty Images.

Sergio Parisse took some part in his first training session with his Italian team-mates in Cobham yesterday after linking up with them on Tuesday, and(...)

Cian Healy being put through his paces at the Ireland squad’s training session at Surrey Sports Park, Guidford, Surrey.  Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The old maxim that you wouldn’t want to have a limp around here certainly applies to the Irish squad. While the news of Rob Kearney’s strained glute (...)

Italy’s outhalf and place-kicker Tommaso Allan. Photograph: Matt Lewis/Getty Images)

Two years ago this month Tommaso Allan made his debut for Perpignan in a French Top 14 match. Wearing the other number 10 jersey that day was Irela(...)