Robbie Henshaw and Dave Kearney during an Ireland training session at Carton House, Maynooth, on Thursday. Billy Stickland/Inpho.

Talented winger’s performances have put him on the cusp of World Cup squad

Dave Kearney starts on the Ireland team named on Thursday to play Wales at the Aviva on Saturday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The number 14 will start against Wales on Saturday with Luke Fitzgerald at 13

Kurt McQuilkin: “Coaching a club that you really care about, you know? We had a good amount of success at the time and, yeah, it  just ingrained something in me.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Former Leinster captain couldn’t resist the invitation to rejoin the province’s coaching team

New Leinster coach Leo Cullen at a press conference in UCD. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Appointment as head coach of 37-year-old student of the game should not surprise

Connacht scrumhalf Kieran Marmion still has a chance of making Ireland’s World Cup squad. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho.

Connacht scrumhalf is broadening skill range to push for international recognition

Kevin McLaughlin will captain Leinster during the World Cup. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Tighthead prop still expected to be available for Ireland’s warm-up game against Wales

Leinster tighthead prop Marty Moore had shoulder surgery twice in seven months. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.

Tighthead has to have game time if he is to make Ireland’s World Cup squad

Stephen Ferris was arguably the most destructive flanker ever to play for Ireland. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Former Ulster flanker was blighted by injury but career was full of highlights

Ian Madigan launches a pinpoint crossfield kick for Luke Fitzgerald to score a try in Saturday’s Rugby World Cup warm-up match against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Versatile back Ian Madigan still exuding self-belief, still fielding old questions

Tipperary’s Seamus Callanan wins the ball ahead of Padraig Mannion of Galway to score his sides second goal. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Canning’s 10 points in match puts player up to 4-47 for the championship

Ireland fullback Simon Zebo is tackled during the World Cup warm-up game against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph:   Billy Stickland/Inpho

Joe Schmidt reports clean bill of health after Luke Fitzgerald’s late try seals warm-up win

New IRFU president Martin O’Sullivan. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho.

Billy Glynn questions ‘flawed and mismanaged’ process that brought reforms in union

Toulon players celebrate after the European Champions Cup final win against Clermont Auvergne at Twickenham in May. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho.

Hectic opening-pool rounds fixture list to be concluded by January of next year

IRFU Chief Executive Philip Browne has confirmed a new sponsor will take over from Three in May 2016. Photograph: Inpho

Chief executive Philip Browne confirms a new sponsor is in place to take over next year

Ireland’s Six Nations win was a major factor in the IRFU’s “strong financial performance” in the 2014/15 season. Photograph: Getty

Funding for both the provincial and club game able to increase by €4 million

Irish flanker Chris Henry:  “If you do something that makes somebody look good it is noticed . . .” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Speedy recovery following stroke puts Ulster flanker back in World Cup frame

Jack Conan will make his debut against Scotland. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Cian Healy’s chances of returning are now being rated at 70-30 percent against

Monaghan’s Ciarán McManus and Galway hurler Jonathan Glynn with their Opel GAA/GPA All-Star awards for July at Croke Park.  Photograph:  David Maher/Sportsfile

Monaghan star says refereees need more help on match days from other officials

Tipperary manager Eamon O’Shea gives last-minute instructions to his players before the Munster final against Waterford. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

‘Galway have been really good this year . . and I think they are a really formidable team’

Dublin footballer Philly McMahon at the launch of the Griffith College certificate in dual career development in sport: he said he is capable of marking any player. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Dublin corner-back yet to see Mayo’s Aidan O’Shea play as All-Ireland semi-final nears

Galways supporting cast has made star man Joe Canning even more of a threat. Photograph: Inpho

Tribesmen’s new tactical set-up under has seen them greatly improve this year

Tyrone’s Justin McMahon puts the shackles on  Monaghan’s Owen Duffy at Croke Park. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Veteran defender knows taking on the champions will prove a massive task

Waterford manager Derek McGrath: “Every team wants to be like Kilkenny.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Déise manager and the board have discussed plans for years after 2016

Kilkenny’s manager Brian Cody is reflecting on yet another All-Ireland final appearance. Photograoh: James Crombie/Inpho

McGrath admits sustaining intensity against Kilkenny proved difficult

Galway’s Jack Coyne gets away from Kilkenny’s Conor Doheny during the All-Ireland minor hurling semi-final at Croke Park. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Kilkenny and young Tribesmen produce an enthralling drawn minor semi-final

Donnacha Ryan in action during the Ireland squad’s training session at Carton House, Kildare yesterday. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Iinpho

Munster stalwart is delighted to be fighting fit and back in the Ireland frame

Cian Healy training at Carton House on Thursday. The Ireland loosehead  will be given until the opening World Cup game against Canada to prove his fitness. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Prop will have until opening World Cup game against Canada to prove fitness

Donnacha Ryan is set to make his first Ireland appearance since March 2013. Photograph: Inpho

Rugby World Cup warm-up against Wales will be Ryan’s first game under Joe Schmidt

The 33-year-old Mark Chisholm has 58 caps for Australia. Photograph:  David Rogers/Getty Images

Mark Chisholm fills gap left by Paul O’Connell’s departure to Toulon

A crowd of 58,680 were present for Sunday’s All-Ireland football championship double header. Photograph: Inpho

Seán Moran and Gavin Cummiskey with the main talking points from the weekend

 Fermanagh manager Pete McGrath and his players salute the team’s fans after Dublin’s victory at Croke Park. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Pete McGrath proud to see players receive rapturous reception from supporters

Donegal captain Michael Murphy caused Galway’s defence plenty of problems during the  All-Ireland round 4B qualifier at Croke Park. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

‘That’ll never leave their game. They are good at it, why would they change it completely’

Colm McFadden looks on as Donegal’s Patrick McBrearty scores his side’s opening goal at Croke Park. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Magnificent Murphy to the fore as Galway are overrun in a one-sided second half

Donegal’s Patrick McBrearty celebrates scoring the opening goal with Colm McFadden during the  All-Ireland  Round 4B qualifier at Croke Park. Photograph:  Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Captain proves fitness with brilliant display in midfield and attack

Fermanagh manager Pete McGrath must now prepare his players for Dublin and not Kerry. Photograph: Andrew Paton/Presseye/Inpho

Mayo and Monaghan await winners of Sligo/Tyrone and Donegal/Galway clashes

Waterford’s Austin Gleeson scores a side line puck against Dublin. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

‘Ravenous’ Kilkenny present biggest challenge yet for season’s surprise packets

Alan Smith goes past Brian O’Driscoll during Kildare’s victory over Cork in the final round of the football qualifiers. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Kerry manager not surprised by Lilywhite victory over Cork in Semple Stadium

It’s been a contrasting week for Cork and Galway GAA. Photograph: Inpho

Gavin Cummiskey and Ian O’Riordan with the main talking points from the weekend

 Maurice Shanahan celebrates after Waterford’s quater-final victory over Dublin.  Photograph: Inpho/Morgan Treacy

Waterford ‘need to drive on’ against Kilkenny after beating Dublin

Joe Canning says he is getting sick of people taking about what a good year Galway had in 2012. Photograph: David Maher / Sportsfile

Memory of 2012 disappointment lingers on but the Galway star is quietly optimistic

Kildare’s Paul Cribbin celebrates after his side beat Cork to reach the All-Ireland quarter-finals. Photo: Donall Farmer/INPHO

Milestone victory puts Lilywhites back on centre stage as Cork leave it behind

Australian secondrow Kane Douglas has been released from his contract with Leinster. Photograph:  Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Secondrow has arrived home in Australia where he’s set to join Queensland

Joe Schmidt: has achieved a 78 per cent win ratio as coach of Ireland with 14 victories in 18 Test matches. Photo:  Lorraine O’Sullivan/PA

IRFU chief executive welcome the New Zealander’s decision to extend his stay at the helm

Simon Zebo: “I feel really fresh now, excited and hopefully my best rugby will come out.” Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Munster speedster says selection will come down to form of challengers for positions

A tag rugby tournament is to be held in the memory of Berkeley balcony victim Aoife Beary.

Donal Canniffe and Fiona Coghlan to take part in tournament for family of Aoife Barry

Tyrone’s Sean Cavanagh in action against Tipperary in Semple Stadium. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Tyrone star relished his trip to Semple Stadium but Croke Park is main goal

Johnny McCaffrey: “We have looked at Waterford . . .They are a very good hurling side but they work extremely hard.”  Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Midfielder impressed with Déise but says Limerick win was a huge boost for Dublin

Bernard Brogan at Dublin sponsor AIG’s re-launch of insurance products for members of all sporting clubs in Ireland. Photograph: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Bernard Brogan says Jim Gavin’s panel have moved on from controversy

Tyrone’s Conor Clarke holds off the challenge of Tipperary’s Alan Campbell during the qualifier at Semple Stadium on Saturday. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Mickey Harte’s side run riot in the second half as Premier challenge evaporates

Sean Cavanagh helped Tyrone to a comfortable win over Tipperary in Thurles. Photograph: Inpho

Mickey Harte’s men keep their summer alive as Tipp only manage one point after half time

Waisake Naholo is tackled by Argentina’s Tomas Cubelli during New Zealand’s 39-18 victory Christchurch. Photograph: Marty Melville/AFP/Getty Images

Infinite supply of Pacific Islanders assists pursuit of invincibility

 Leo Cullen: preparing Leinster to play Edinburgh on September 4th. Photograph: Inpho/Cathal Noonan

Guinness Pro12 campaign kicks off in away game to Edinburgh

Dublin’s Danny Sutcliffe in action against  Waterford’s Austin Gleeson in the Division 1A relegation play-off which Dublin won at Walsh Park last year. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Winners of Dublin/Waterford clash to face Kilkenny in the semi-final while Tipp await Cork or Galway

“Even when you win things, you have mediocre days,” says Mickey Harte. Photograph: Andrew Paton/ Presseye/Inpho

Tyrone boss stresses importance of hitting form at right moment after win over Meath

Dublin captain  Stephen Cluxton lifts the Delaney Cup after victory over Westmeath.  Photograph: Tommy Grealy/Inpho

‘Like other football trends it will swing the other way soon,’ says Dublin boss

Richie Donnelly of Tyrone is well marked by  Michael Newman of Meath during the  All-Ireland SFC Round 2B Qualifier at Healy Park in Omagh. Photograph: Andrew Paton/Inpho/Presseye

Royal County will take plenty away from Omagh despite Championship exit

 Eamonn Fitzmaurice speaks to his Kerry players at Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Éamonn Fitzmaurice admits Munster final draw was bad day at office for his side

Manager Jim Gavin says hunger in Dublin camp is as sharp as ever. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Westmeath to be brought back down to earth by Jim Gavin’s in-form side

Crossmaglen clubman  Jamie Clarke is a pivotal man for Armagh. Photograph: Jonathan Porter/Presseye/Inpho

Kieran McGeeney’s side have yet to deliver convincing performance this summer

Meath’s Kevin Reilly in action against Westmeath in the Leinster semi-final. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Meath are better than they’ve shown but Mickey Harte’s men should have the edge

Wexford have credentials but trip north may prove too much a burden

Colin O’Riordan: was magnificent in last May’s under-21 All-Ireland final. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho.

Players coming through under-21s should be enough to see off Louth

Leinster’s Kane Douglas: struggled to nail down a starting role in the province last season after suffering a string of injuries. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Australian secondrow the latest call-up that will see Leinster down 25 players on international duty and preparing for World Cup (...)

Recently retired Tipp hero Eoin Kelly: was disappointed that Galway  fell into Kilkenny’s trap

Former star player believes the team should now be comfortable with Eamon O’Shea’s style

Wexford’s Kevin Foley: his senior distractions have now been removed

Kilkenny stacked with Leinster minor champions from 2013 and 2014

Dublin’s Michael Carton: he is not expected to travel to Semple stadium this Saturday. Photograph: INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Veteran defender was unused substitute during Saturday’s victory over Laois

Anthony Cunningham’s Galway produced a loose performance as they lost to Brian Cody’s Kilkenny at Croke Park on Sunday. Photograph: Inpho

Seán Moran, Gavin Cummiskey and Ian O’Riordan with the main talking points

Galway manager Anthony Cunningham: “We’d be pushing hard for the Galway supporters to come out and drive this team on, as there is something to build on.” Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Galway take positives from performance, while for Cody team ethic trumps everything

Conal Keaney celebrates his goal during Dublin’s comfortable Round 1 qualifier win over Laois. Photograph: Inpho

Mark Schutte double sets Dublin on their way against Laois in qualifier

Killian Young: “Preparation has now gone very professional, and where it’s all going to stop, nobody know.” Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Defender would like to enjoy one particular aspect of professionalism – the rest

Ger Aylward scores a goal against Wexford. “Never any doubt in my mind that he would play at some stage,” says Richie Hogan. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Riche Hogan says injuries held back a player whose talent was never in doubt

Éamonn Fitzmaurice has ruled Paul Galvin out of Sunday’s Munster football final at Fitzgerald stadium, Killarney. Photo: James Crombie/INPHO

Former footballer of the year short of match fitness

Conor McDonald battles for the sliotar during the Leinster Senior Hurling Championship semi-final. Photo: James Crombie/INPHO

Forward focused on Cork after taking Nowlan Park drubbing on chin

Kieran Martin and Ger Egan celebrate Westmeath’s thrilling win over rivals Meath. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Dublin will be overwhelming favourites when counties clash in Leinster final

Richie Hogan: “We were totally blown away . . .Galway just came with, and they do it every couple of years, an attitude that they would beat all the teams in the country put together.” Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Leinster final hammering in 2012 still rankles with the Hurler of the Year

A big step forward for women’s representative body

Kildare manager John Ryan reacts late on in their defeat to Dublin. Photo: James Crombie/INPHO

Seán Moran, Malachy Clerkin and Gavin Cummiskey look at the weekend’s action

Kieran Martin of Westmeath celebrates at the final whistle after his side’s victory over Meath in the Leinster SFC semi-final at Croke Park. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Inspirational Kieran Martin helps midlanders to first-ever championship win over Meath

Meath’s goalkeeper Paddy O’Rourke was given a red card for this collision with Kieran Martin. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Westmeath’s hero Kieran Martin always felt comeback was possible

Galway’s Jason Flynn will be back for the Leinster final. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Forward broke his finger after the 13-point victory over Dublin

Dr Una May, Irish Sports Council’s Anti-Doping director:  “Regardless of what level players are playing at doping is banned.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Monaghan’s Thomas Connolly used the same substance athlete Ben Johnson availed of

Monaghan players were not informed by their county board of the new anti-doping sanctions

Chairman confirms he received Croke Park email on updated doping procedures but never saw it

Jonny Cooper: “Jim has shown he plays players by form. And that the lads aren’t picked on reputation.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

O’Carroll, O’Sullivan and Macauley all fit and pressing for starting roles against Kildare

Laois’s Brendan Quigley  is tackled by Kildare’s Emmet Bolton and Eoghan O’ Flaherty. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

‘It’s going to be a big, big challenge for us’ says boss of overwhelming favourites Dublin

 Martin O’Reilly scores Donegal’s  second goal against Armagh. Oisín McConville can’t see Derry stopping Rory Gallagher’s side either. Photograph: Andrew Paton/Presseye/Inpho

Armagh legend says it’s becoming the most predictable championship ever as big four march on

Oisín McConville: “I had a fair idea that he [Thomas Connolly, who got a two-year suspension for doping] was going to be made an example of and that’s a pity.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Oisín McConville, JJ Delaney warn GAA players need to be treated with care

Pundit JJ Delaney will be analysing the Leinster SHC match between Galway and Laois live on Sky Sports this Saturday.   Photograph:  Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Legendary defender says Wexford’s Ciarán McDonald one of best full forwards around

Monaghan’s Thomas Connolly has been banned for two years for testing positive for anabolic steroids. Photograph: Inpho

Monaghan footballer given two year ban after testing positive for anabolic steroids

Tomás Ó Sé: “They just seem like a team if you get on top of them very early they’ve no Plan B and they’ll just lie down.” Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Five-time All Star and Kerry legend says Rebels seem to lack leaders and an adequate Plan B

Monaghan’s Thomas Connolly has been handed a two-year ban after testing positive for the banned anabolic steroid Stanozolol. Photograph: Inpho

23-year-old tested positive for banned anabolic steroid Stanozolol in February

Dublin defender Ger Brennan has yet to recover from injury. Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

O’Carroll, O’Sullivan and Bastick expected back for Dublin's semi-final against Kildare

Meath’s Graham Reilly scores a goal against Wicklow at Páirc Tailteann: “If Dublin run through the middle of us – if we do manage to get to a Leinster final – we’re going to get kicked out of Croke Park again.” Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Big attendance at Thurles shows Premier County are moving in the right direction

Galway’s Fiontán Ó Curraoin and Mayo’s Cillian O’Connor become involved in a  scuffle late in Sunday’s Connacht semi-final at Pearse Stadium. Photo: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Like Donegal’s Michael Murphy, Mayo’s towering figure causing plenty of problems for defenders

 Mayo footballers, senior Cillian O’Connor, minor Barry Duffy, and Kilkenny hurlers, minor Tommy Walsh and senior Michael Fennelly at the launch of the Electric Ireland All-Ireland minor championshhips at Croke Park. Photo: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Troublesome lower back problem may curtail Kilkenny ace’s role at Nowlan Park

 Paul O’Connell has signed for Toulon, the Top 14 club have confirmed.

Ireland captain signs two-year deal with Top 14 side

Mayo beat rivals Galway in front of a packed Pearse Stadium on Sunday. Photograph: Inpho

Seán Moran, Malachy Clerkin and Gavin Cummiskey with the weekend’s main talking points

Meath’s Graham Reilly scores against Wicklow. Photograph: Inpho

Johnny Magee’s side pass up golden opportunity for first win over Meath since 1957

Wes Hoolahan provided some much needed craft and guile during Ireland’s 1-1 draw with Scotland on Saturday. Photograph: Inpho

Gavin Cummiskey gives his verdict on Martin O’Neill’s men after their draw with the Scots

Steven Fletcher is sent flying by Marc Wilson during Ireland’s 1-1 Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland. Photograph: Inpho

Ireland boss was left to rue his side’s slow start to the second half after a dominant first

“I can’t remember ever any manager telling me ‘This is the way to play for a draw’,” said Scotland boss Gordon Strachan.

Manager believes trust has helped to build team spirit in his squad

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