Toulon’s  Romain Taofifenua and Ulster’s Tommy Bowe compete for a loose ball  during the  Champions Cup clash at the Kingspan Stadium in Belfast. Photo:  Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Romain Taofifenua was guilty of top-end stupidity and the punishment should have reflected that fact

Toulon’s outhalf Matt Giteau  is tackled by Llanelli Scarlets’ full back Liam Williams during last week’s  European  Champions Cup clash at  the Mayol stadium in Toulon,  France. Photo: Bertrand Langlois/Getty

The best outhalf in world rugby graces Irish soil this weekend as European champions arrive in Belfast

Ulster’s Paul Marshall in action against  Glasgow. “He’s super-talented, sharp and very busy with a lightning pass off both hands and over the weeks he’s adding a great kicking game.” Photo: Stephen Hamilton/Presseye/Inpho

Given Leicester Tigers’ injury woes, visit to Welford Road looks ideally timed

Les Kiss  on duty with Ulster for their visit to play Cardiff Blues last month at Cardiff Arms Park. Photo: Ashley Crowden/Inpho

Potential of contenders for the Irish squad will have been subjected to close scrutiny

Munster’s Gerhard van den Heever gets tackled by Aaron Jarvis and Justin Tipuric of Ospreys in their Pro12 game. Photograph: Inpho.

An extremely tricky balancing act between management and leadership

Munster’s Ian Keatley attempts to swerve the attention of the Edinburgh fullback at Thomand Park. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

While Connacht and Munster can be optimistic, Leinster have yet to fire

CROSS Cancer Research Rugby Legends cycle: “This is no place to be for your second cycle in a year – belly empty, bar the gallon-and-a-half Kenmare offered the night before”

Two thoughts: what is a ‘legend’; and difference between ‘management and leadership?’

Brian O’Driscoll and Leo Cullen: “For all the players that came and went over 15 years those two remained crucial.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.

Leo Cullen and Brian O’Driscoll have been the steady heads behind Leinster success

Toulouse centre Florian Fritz leaves the pitch after he was injured during the Top 14 quarter-final rugby union match against  Racing Metro earlier this month. He was allowed to return to the game. Photograph: Getty Images

If we don’t wise up many players could reap a terrible harvest after retirement

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