Leinster chief executive Mick Dawson: confirmed offer of contract to Johnny Sexton and expects decision within next week or fortnight. Photograph: Inpho.

Rob Kearney keen to stay with province and sort out future as quickly as possible

Rob Kearney: “We’re in the process of putting together a sort of mentoring programme. You have to be very careful how you do it because it’s very important that we’re not creating a hierarchy in the organisation”. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Young players making quite an impression and it bodes well for what will be a demanding season

 Darren Sweetnam will make his Munster senior debut.  James Crombie/Inpho

Anthony Foley names a young team for friendly against Gloucester at Kingsholm

 Jamie Heaslip  is the new Leinster captain. Photograph: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

The Ireland and Lions number eight succeeds Leo Cullen in leading the province

Mike Sherry at a Munster training session at Corca Dhuibhne, Dingle, Co Kerry. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Munster hooker has a second shoulder operation and is not expected back ahead of the new year

Rory McIlroy holds the British Open Claret Jug trophy on the Old Trafford pitch during half-time of Manchester United’s   Premier League match against Swansea City at Old Trafford. Photograph: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

‘I came close a couple of years ago but didn’t quite get the job done,’ says world number one

 Tom Grace is the new Chairman of the Lions Board. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Tom Kiernan, Fergus Slattery and Keith Wood inducted into the IRB’s Hall of Fame

Clontarf’s Tadhg Furlong in action for the club against UCD. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Division 1A will revert to playoffs, semi-final and final to determine the champions

 Paul Ryan (right, in action against Kilkenny) returns to the Dublin line-up and Tipperary will be wary of his ability if they infringe close to goal. Photograph: Inpho

Anthony Daly’s team face a huge task as they attempt to bounce back from heavy Leinster final defeat

More articles