“It’s a day for boot, bite and bollock,” said Ronan O’Gara on the RTÉ panel. Photograph: Anthony Wallace /AFP/Getty Images

First Six Nations without McGurk, Hook and Pope – and it works just fine

 Mayo’s Cora Staunton. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Not everyone in GAA is convinced Lidl money will trickle down to grassroots

Andy Murray watches as Novak Djokovic receives his trophy after winning the Australian Open. Photograph: AP Photo/Andrew Brownbill

Advertisers believe the League is watched by accident-prone gamblers

Pegasus’s Hannah McMillan battles for the ball with  Vicky McMaw of Elks Mandatory. Photograph: Rowland White/Inpho/Presseye

Cup holders Ulster Elks book spot in last four after beating Pegasus 4-2 on strokes

The Ireland players show their dejection after losing the penalty shoot-out to China in the World League quarter-final in Valencia. Photograph: Stanislas Brochier/Inpho

Graham Shaw’s side invided to participate in top-class tournament in April

Serena Williams  plays a backhand return during her women’s singles match against Russia’s Maria Sharapova. Photograph:  Peter Parks/AFP/Getty Images

If muscles were all you needed then you’d just give your weight-lifting team tennis rackets

Cork’s Briege Corkery. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Cork footballer hoping to win her 11th All-Ireland football medal this year

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri has done a miraculous job in getting his side to the top of the English Premier League table. Photograph: Reuters.

Claudio Ranieri sharing love of Premier League and not feeling in any way entitled

Chloe Watkins converted two early penalty corners for Hermes against UCD. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Chloe Watkins converts two penalty corners to extend Hermes’ winning run to 10

Just five points separate teams from second to seventh

 Aishling Sheridan (Cavan), Áine Haberlin (Laois), Karen McDermott (Westmeath) and Lorraine O’Shea (Tipperary) at the announcement of Lidl’s three-year partnership with the Ladies Gaelic Football Association. Photograph: Sportsfile

Retail firm to invest €1.5 million in the first of three-year sponsorship deal

Tyrone’s Gemma Begley in action against Meath’s Tara Halligan. “We’ve made good progress so far but it’s just the beginning.” Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Tyrone footballer Gemma Begley says new players’ body has made significant progress

 Dublin footballer Ger Brennan with models Alanna and Lynn at the launch of ‘Ladyball’. Photograph: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

That a major brand is investing in women’s sport in Ireland is a wonderful thing

Ireland’s Megan Frazer: she scored in game two against Spain but her short corner strike did not  grant Ireland victory. Photograph: Stanislas Brochier/Inpho

Megan Frazer opens scoreline in second contest but Spain rally to claim 2-1 victory

 Golan Lodge, with Jack Kennedy up, left, jumps the last on their way to winning the Coral.ie  Maiden Hurdle at Leopardstwon. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Jockey Jack Kennedy a man for the future – unless Ted Walsh is Moby Dick

Zoe Wilson will make her Ireland debut in Spain. Photograph: Inpho

Irish women will play Spain four times in the coming days

Louise Quinn: “I just wanted to give it a try, to see how far I could push myself in one of the best leagues in world football.” Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Irish international very much at home as a professional in Swedish first division

Jenny Egan missed out on a medal in Baku by 0.4 of a second. Photograph: Sportsfile

2015 saw bronze, but now Egan needs ‘the best race of my life’ to get to Olympics

Fionnuala McCormack (second from right) with the bronze medal winning Ireland team (left to right): Kerry O’Flaherty, Michelle Finn, Caroline Crowley, Lizzie Lee and Ciara Durkan. Photograph: Inpho.

Inspiring run led Ireland to bronze medal in European Championships

Ellen Curran got the only goal of the game in Hermes’ win over Pembroke Wanderers. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Hermes, UCD, Loreto and Old Alexandra all progress to Saturday’s quarter-finals

Australian reporter Mel McLaughlin found herself propositioned by Chris Gayle on live television.

West Indies cricketer thinks everyone he meets want to share his ‘hanky-panky bed’

Gary Anderson  was like a “Killer on the Loose”, so to speak, exterminating James Wade’s hopes in a decidedly one-sided affair at Alexandra Palace. Photograph: by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Once you get to grips with the nicknames, shouting at the players can be fun

Katie Walsh celebrates with her father Ted after winning the Irish Grand National on Thunder and Roses at Fairyhouse, yesterday. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish Times

From the sublime to the downright ridiculous, Mary Hannigan shines a light on some of the year’s most bizarre but strangely captiv(...)

Boxer Michael Conlan drove back to Belfast for his tie, so no one could begrudge him his Sports Personality of the Year crown. “If I hadn’t won it, I’d have been disappointed,” he beamed. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

‘Wrong’ O’Neill claims Manager of Year gong while Dundalk are voted Team of the Year

Cliodhna Sargent: scored four goals for Cork Harlequins in their comprehensive win over Greenfields. Photograph: Inpho

Rivals Railway Union fail to take advantage after draw with Pembroke Wanderers and Ulster Elks loses to Pegasus

Emma Russell: The Syracuse University star will join the Irish squad in their warm weather trip to Valencia in January.

Hermes aiming to extend 100 per cent record in the Hockey League as they face UCC

Isobel Joyce batting for Ireland in the ICC World Twenty20 clash against Bangladesh. Photograph: Barry Chambers/Inpho

Veteran of over 100 caps hopes team’s success can inspire a younger generation

Emma Russell celebrates with her Syracuse University teammates.

Enniskerry native guided school to first United States National Championship

Kylie Murphy of Wexford Youths lifts the FAI Cup at the Aviva Stadium after beating Shelbourne. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Wexford Youths captain completes line-up after guiding team through great year

Cork Harlequins’ Yvonne O’Byrne and Chloe Brown of Ards in action during EY Ladies Hockey League clash. Photograph: Rowland White/Pressey/Inpho

Pembroke Wanderers outclassed 5-1 at Booterstown

Hermes are bidding  to make it eight wins out of eight while Pembroke are seeking their third victory in a row.  Photo: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Busy pre-Christmas spell for Hockey League contenders

 “Ask and ye shall receive,” Tyson Fury told the Sky person. “I asked for a win. God gave me this win.” Photograph: Action Images via  Reuters/Lee Smith Livepic

It was a wet and windy day at home, but Murray’s class brightened up the screen

Chloe Watkins: her goal gave Leinster side Hermes a 2-1 win over Cork Harlequins

Ulster clubs get the better of Leinster opponents in three of five Irish Senior Cup second round ties

Ireland’s captain Niamh Briggs: “Every single occasion that I get to stand there and listen to the national anthem is one that I cherish.” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Ireland’s rugby captain’s thoughts often drift to World Cup 2017 which Ireland will host

 Madeline Perry: “You’re winning titles, people are telling you you’re great, and then all of a sudden you become a nobody. You lose your identity in a way.”  Photo:  Stanley Chou/Getty Images

Once the third-ranked women’s player in the world, now she faces a whole new challenge

Republic of Ireland’s Niamh Fahey: At 27, she wanted the chance to play full-time, and that is what Chelsea offered, unlike Arsenal.  Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

It’s rare for Irish players to find clubs where they can afford to focus solely on football

Leicester’s Jamie Vardy of whom Paul Merson said: “If I was on ’oliday and I was reading a Ladybird book and that was the story, you’d put the book down Jeff, you’d put the book down.”  Photo:  Nigel French/PA Wire.

Succession of sporting wins for Ireland is threatening our famed national humility

Lisa Fallon works as football analyst for Cork City and Northern Ireland

New e-book by Inpho Sports Photography - ‘Irish Women In Sports 2000-2015’

 Ireland manager Martin O’Neill  celebrates with two-goal hero Jon Walters.   Photograph: Aidan Crawley/EPA

Martin and Roy man-hugging, half the stadium weeping, Dunphy too.

Ireland International Chloe Watkins was among the scorers for Hermes. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Unbeaten Ulster Elks stay on leaders’ shoulder after victory over Ards

Robbie Brady celebrates after scoring.

All-seeing super powers was night’s major conundrum

Hermes put their unbeaten record on the line against high-flying Railway Union. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Leaders aiming to prolong their perfect start in the EY Hockey League at Park Avenue

Republic of Ireland captain and leading scorer Robbie Keane during a press conference at the FAI National Training Centre, Abbotstown, Dublin on Wednesday. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho.

Veteran LA Galaxy striker confident Martin O’Neill’s team have what it takes to advance

Noelle Lenihan was second on her debut at World Championships. Photograph by Francois Nel/Getty Images.

Silver medalist in Discus at Paralymic Athletics World Championships sets Cork girl apart

The TV3 presentation team that covered the 2015 Ruby World Cup. We can expect the see some of the same faces during the 2018 Six Nations Championship.  Photograph: Pat Murphy/Sportsfile.

Mary Hannigan: Advertising breaks set to enrage purists who yearn for old ways of RTÉ

Richard Keogh: “The change of manager has helped me, he has shown a lot of faith in me and I feel like I’ve taken the opportunities he has given me.” Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Derby defender says victory over Germany has bred confidence in Republic of Ireland panel

Daryl Murphy with Scotland’s Charlie Mulgrew: he may make his fourth start of the qualifying campaign when Ireland take on Bosnia on Friday night. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Ipswich striker now keen to claim first goal for Ireland if called upon by Martin O’Neill

Anna O’Flanagan: scored hat-trick for Hermes in 8-1 defeat of  Greenfields. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Ulster Elks and Railway Union both drop points, while Pegasus lose again

Wexford Youths celebrate winning the FAI Cup for the first time after a  penalty shoot-out against Shelbourne at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Inpho

Despite the weather, nothing was going to rain on Wexford side’s parade, even Cork City players warming up during their penalty sh(...)

Ulster  Elks’  Gemma Frazer: made her senior international debut for Ireland against Scotland: Photograph: Rowland White/Presseye/Inpho

Champions Pegasus in danger of falling well off the pace as they face Cork Harlequins

New Zealand’s fullback Ben Smith  passes to his captain Richie McCaw during World Cup final against Australia at Twickenham. Photograph: Franck Fife/AFP/Getty Images

World Cup final’s dramatic second half even had heretics rejoicing

GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Final, Croke Park, Dublin 21/9/2014Donegal vs KerryDonegal’s manager Jim McGuinnessMandatory Credit ©INPHO/James Crombie

Mary Hannigan talks to the former Donegal manager about the highs and the lows

Elena Tice: the 17-year-old from Loreto, a cricket international at 13, has been included in Ireland’s hockey squad.  Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Loreto youngster and Ulster Elks’ Gemma Frazer in squad for Scotland series

Paddy “The Hooligan” Holohan dejected after losing his UFC fight against  Louis Smolka. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Paddy Holohan’s pick-me up after UFC pummelling? A nice cup of tea . . .

Emma Gray: won 118 caps for Ireland in an illustrious career.

Goalkeeper who won 118 caps will continue to play for her club Hermes

Cork’s Briege Corkery and Rena Buckley: have won ten All-Ireland football medals and six All-Ireland camogie medals each. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

An unparalleled record of achievement, their longevity is as startling as their success.

Republic of Ireland’s Richard Keogh challenges Poland’s Robert Lewandowski for the ball during the European Championship Qualifying match at the National Stadium, Warsaw, Poland. Photograph: Tony Marshall/PA Wire

Ireland’s players are disappointed but staying optimistic about going to France

Republic of Ireland Fans in Warsaw Ahead of the Euro 2016 Qualifier against  Poland. Photograph: INPHO/Donall Farmer

Everything you need to know about Ireland’s RWC and Euro 2016 clashes

Ireland’s Shane Long celebrates with Robbie Brady and Wes Hoolahan at the end of the game. Photograph:  Donall Farmer/Inpho

Liamo: ‘For me, this is the greatest result for Ireland since 2001. Quite incredible’

 Brendan Rodgers looks dejected during his final game as Liverpool manager. Photograph: Lee Smith/Reuters

Carragher and Souness left to analyse decline and fall of another Liverpool manager

Anna O’Flanagan scored twice for Hermes against Ards in the Ey Hockey League at Booterstown on Saturday. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho.

Second-half onslaught puts Ards to the sword at Booterstown

Gráinne McElwain: the TG4 woman gives it her best, year in, year out, her efforts bordering on the heroic, but she rarely gets anywhere. Photograph: Bryan Brophy/1IMAGE

TG4’s Gráinne McElwain thwarted in annual attempt to overcome Cork side’s modesty

Briege Corkery: Cork dual star can make history with a win over Dublin in final at Croke Park. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho.

Eamonn Ryan's side are seeking their 10th All-Ireland football title in 11 years

Dublin’s Amy Connolly: “To have the chance to actually play in Croke Park, which I’ve never done. It’s what you dream of as a kid.” Photograph: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Busy young mother relishing the chance to face Cork in the All-Ireland final

Cork’s Briege Corkery : “People do ask if we’re not sick of winning. God, you never get sick of that winning feeling. Ever”. Photograph: INPHO/Tommy Grealy

Briege Corkery knows she is lucky to have won so much with team-mate Buckley

Dublin’s Stephen Cluxton trotted up and down the pitch “like the slow boat to China”, according to Martin Carney. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Neutrals were having a hard time deciding who not to support as Dublin bring Sam home

Fireworks light up the sky during the Rugby World Cup opening ceremony. Photograph: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

As they purred at the thought of it on TV3, it was all terribly serious over on UTV

Cork captain Ashling Thompson lifts the O’Duffy Cup in Croke Park after Cork’s victory in the All-Ireland camogie final against Galway. Photograph: Eric Luke

Cork win 26th All-Ireland title with devotion of players obvious to see

Gemma O’Connor gets away from Ursula Jacob in the All-Ireland camogie semi-final between Cork and Wexford at Semple Stadium in Thurles. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Gemma O’Connor seeking seventh winners’ medal but wants more support from GAA

Jenny Egan endured more frustration when she was just two seconds off a medal at the World Sprint Championships in Milan, only 11 seconds separating the top six. Photograph:  Inpho

The Irish Times/Irish Sports Council Sportswoman Award for August

Dublin’s Diarmuid Connolly during the pre-match parade Photograph: INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Pundits left with little to bemoan after Croke Park spectacle

 Kim Flood (left) in action for Dublin. Flood is a big admirer of Armagh, especially their star midfielder Caroline O’Hanlon. Photograph: Inpho

Women’s All-Ireland football semi-final – Dublin v Armagh, Parnell Park, Saturday, 2pm

Usain Bolt of Jamaica wins gold in the Men’s 100 metres final at the World Athletics Championships in Beijing. Photograph: Getty Images.

Soul of athletics saved, Tiger briefly burns bright and Kerry stand ground

Donegal’s captain Aoife McDonnell after defeating Waterford in the 2010 All-Ireland Intermediate final at Croke Park. McDonnell has returned to the squad after management changes. Photograph: Inpho/James Crombie

The devotion to the county by returning emigrants has been enriching

Sarah Byrne excelled for Ireland in basketball at the Special Olympics this year. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

The Irish Times/Irish Sports Council Sportswoman Award for July

Russian supermodel Natalia Vodianova starts a kiss-a-thon with Fifa secretary general Jerome Valcke on stage during the preliminary draw for the 2018 World Cup in Saint Petersburg on Saturday. Photograph: Getty Images.

No rushing in St Petersburg as battle lines are drawn for advance on World Cup 2018

 Zach Johnson smiles as he poses  with the Claret Jug  after winning the   British Open at the Old Course  at St Andrews. Photograph: Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty

Peter Alliss in his element as nation suffers dose of Claretjugigis

Padraig Harrington tees off on the 11th hole during the third round of the 144th Open Championship at The Old Course in St Andrews, Scotland. Photograph:  Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

It was hard to choose the fishing when such a smorgasbord of sport was on offer

Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates beating Switzerland’s Roger Federer in the men’s singles final at Wimbledon. Photograph: EPA.

As the drama at Wimbledon unfolded former finalist puts on his best display

Boxer Katie Taylor when arriving back at Dublin Airport after she won gold at the 2015 European Games, held in Baku, Azerbaijan, last month. Photograph: PA.

World champion not willing to rest on her laurels after European Games triumph

Peter Caruth celebrates scoring Ireland’s second goal in the World Hockey League fifth-place playoff, in Antwerp, Belgium. Photograph: Koen Suyk/Inpho

There weren’t enough buckets this week to hold all the sporting tears

 Jim McGuinness has had a different view of his native Donegal this summer. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Irish punch above their weight, while the English keep a clean sheet

David O’Leary celebrates scoring the winning penalty against Romania on June 25th, 1990. Photograph: Allsport UK/Allsport

On this day 25 years ago David O’Leary sent Ireland into the World Cup quarter-finals. Mary Hannigan imagines what went through th(...)

Branden Grace watches his tee shot on the 10th hole as a structure fire burns outside of the golf course during the third round of the US Open at Chambers Bay. Photo: Matt York/AP

Kilkenny and Tipp progress serenely while frustrated golfers bite their lip

 Leona Maguire’s form in the US has been so exceptional she has reached the top of the world amateur rankings after three tournament wins in her first season. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Madeleine Perry signs off in fitting style while Leona Maguire goes from strength to strength

England fans sing their national anthem before the friendly match with the Republic of Ireland at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

‘When we said we wanted Ireland-England to pass off without incident, I think someone misunderstood’

The anti-Blatter? Soon after UEFA president Michel Platini  voted for Qatar to host the World Cup,  his  son was appointed  chief executive of a Qatar-owned sports company. Photograph: Ruben Sprich/Reuters

Whiff of hypocrisy never far off as Virtuous Voices of Football finally turn on Sepp Blatter

 Bill O’Herlihy with John Giles (left) and Eamon Dunphy:  Some treat sport too seriously, others not seriously enough, because they don’t get the impact it can have on people’s lives – O’Herlihy got the balance just right. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times

Time in his company was enriching, he was a walking, talking cure for cynicism

Newcastle United caretaker manager John Carver celebrates after Newcastle United’s Argentinian midfielder Jonas Gutierrez scores during their Premier League match against West Ham United at St James Park. Photograph: AFP

Swings and roundabouts as West Ham fans point to exit for Allardyce and emotional Kane sheds tears . . . after Spurs clinch Europa(...)

The RTE panel of Colm O’Rourke, Joe Brolly and Pat Spillane were back this weekend. Photo: Inpho

Panel’s pessimism about new season dispersed by Donegal and Tyrone

 Katie Walsh  after winning the Irish Grand National Steeplechase on board the 20-1 shot Thunder And Roses, trained by Sandra Hughes, at Fairyhouse, Co. Meath. Photograph: Inpho

Amateur jockey became just the third woman to win the Irish Grand National

Floyd Mayweather jnr, in action here against Manny Pacquiao, picked up $180 million for his win. Photograph: Monica Almeida/The New York Times

The yellow had been sunk without a trace, the reds were all over the place and the blue was holding its position quite steadily . (...)

Mayweather versus Pacquiao was unavoidable be it outside Operation Princess HQ or with Chris Eubank on Clare Balding’s couch. Photograph: Esther Lin/EPA

Babies and boxing hog the screen, even on Clare Balding’s hyperbole hour

Tony McCoy with Jonjo O’Neill at Sandown racecourse. “We’ll never see the likes of him again,” said O’Neill. Photograph: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

There’ll be plenty of dinners now the greatest jockey of them all

Madeline Perry of Ireland won the Irish Open.  Photo: Stanley Chou/Getty Images

The 38-year-old won the Irish Open at Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club

 Madeline Perry  claimed her sixth Irish Open squash title at Fitzwilliam on Saturday in her final game on the pro circuit. Photo: Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Irish star beats Guyana’s Nicolette Fernandes in final professional tournament

Ireland captain Niamh Briggs with the Six  Nations trophy. Briggs is the March Sportswoman of the Month,  an easy choice both for her own performances and as captain and representative of the 2015 Six Nations champions. Photograph: Inpho

Player chosen both for her own performances and as captain of the 2015 Six Nations champions

Golfing legend Jack Nicklaus joined Ewen Murray in the Sky commentary box. Photograph: Timothy A Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Richie Benaud knew the value of being economical with his words

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