Joe Schmidt: will be trying to rebuild Irish confidence when the squad assembles at Carton House. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Well, that did it. As if Ireland’s worst collective performance in European rugby for 18 years wasn’t bad enough, the loss of Marty Moore for the Six (...)

“We can’t afford to just throw Josh van der Flier (above), Gary Ringrose, Ulster centre Stuart McCloskey and promising Munster flanker Jack O’Donoghue into the Test match arena.” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Talent will never be enough on its own. What characteristics are needed to make it as a professional rugby player? Bravery, naturally, and certain phy(...)

Leinster’s Sean Cronin celebrates after scoring a try in their clash with Bath in the European Champions Cup. Photo: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Leinster 25 Bath 11 This was a hugely uplifting performance for Irish rugby. All his own doing but Leinster coach Leo Cullen has almost instantly(...)

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(...)

Ian Madigan: Of the remaining provincially contracted players, he is the player Leinster are most at risk of losing. Photograph: RyanByrne/Inpho

Leinster could do with a win on Saturday for many reasons. While, realistically, it may not sufficiently atone for previous misdeeds and lead to qual(...)

Toulon centre Ma’a Nonu runs at Leinster outhalf  Jonathan Sexton during the Champions Cup game  at the Stade Felix Mayol. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Toulon 24 Leinster 9 Leinster were brave and obdurate beyond dispute, but they will wonder what might have been had their performance been more acc(...)

Ian Madigan and Jack McGrath both start for Leinster against Ulster on Friday night. Photograph: Inpho

Leo Cullen has radically revamped his team and replacements for tomorrow’s Guinness Pro12 derby against Ulster at the RDS with the return of (...)

Leinster’s Seán Cronin is looking forward to coming up against Ulster’s Rory Best this weekend. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Leinster sat down and had what might constitute an emergency meeting after their second pool defeat in Europe last week. The squad met on Sunday fol(...)

Heather Meldrum, Margaret Pointon and ex-Old Wesley rugby player John Meldrum in the old committee room at the RDS. Photograph: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

The late Ireland rugby international Moss Keane used to quip that the older he got, the better he was. The sentiment sat well on Tuesday in the old (...)