Some of Ireland’s backroom team of Ger Carmody, Jason Cowman, Willie Bennett, David Hanley, Keith Fox, Dr Ciaran Cosgrave, Dave Revins, Richie Murphy and John Moran pitchside at Solider Field, Chicago in November 2018. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

From nutrition to logistics, there is more to a team than what is seen on the pitch

American boxing  promoter  Lou DiBella has questioned the power behind Katie Taylor’s punches. Photograph: Peter Cziborra/Action Images via Reuters

Undisputed lightweight champion set to meet Amanda Serrano in 2020

 Irish hockey player Chloe Watkins:  ‘Every time we go out there we want to try and perform. We do know we have a special group of players and a great programme.’ Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Reaching the World Cup final has given the Irish women’s hockey team motivation

 Energia Park, Donnybrook will host the Irish Women’s hockey team’s Olympic qualifiers. Photograph: Inpho

Women’s Olympic qualifier between Ireland and Canada will be played in ‘pop up’ pitch

The Ireland women’s team will face Canada in a two-legged playoff for a spot at the Olympics. Photo: Jonathan Porter/Inpho

Agreement reached between Leinster Rugby and Hockey Ireland to build temporary pitch

 Irish hockey player Shirley McCay:  ‘I would have gone for Canada or USA. The others would have been a huge test but we are under no illusions.’ Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Women’s and men’s sides face Canadians for place in Tokyo Olympics next year

Brian O’Driscoll unveils a new Guinness campaign, Believe, in support of the Irish rugby team as they head for Japan to compete in the  World Cup.  Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Former captain says Joe Schmidt’s side will change strategy in Japan, but not drastically

 Warren Gatland: “When they play that way . . . in the past when we have success against Ireland, I said come off really hard at those one off runners, stop them winning those collisions and keeping your discipline so that they don’t get an opportunity.“

‘They just played phase, after phase after phase’

  Joe Schmidt: “To the Aviva Stadium and what it means over the years, I have had some special experiences and absorbing the atmosphere.”

Joe Schmidt not getting carried away by Ireland’s rise to number one in rankings

Wayne Barnes: “What I think are going to be the really crucial areas of the World Cup is ensuring players have space and players have quick ball.” Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

Accomplished English referee looking forward to Japan and his fourth World Cup

Irish gymnast Emma Slevin puts on a display during the Sport Ireland announcement of the multi-year investment of over €3 million in the Women in Sport programme at the  National Indoor Arena in Abbotstown. Photograph:  David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile

41 national governing bodies to share out €3.25m over two-year cycle

Sanita Puspure displays the gold medal she won at the World Championships. She is now favourite to win Olympic gold in Tokyo. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Sister’s sad passing reinforced rower’s determination to defend World Championship gold

Johnny Sexton and Joe Schmidt in discussion during the Ireland training session at Carton House on Tuesday. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Ireland outhalf trusts in process put in place by S&C coach Jason Cowman

Robbie Henshaw  in action  during an  Ireland training session at Carton House on Tuesday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Henshaw, Healy and Earls all trained on Tuesday but outhalf remained on sidelines

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt says Devin Toner was very unlucky in missing out on the World Cup and that his ankle injury had affected his pre-season. Photograph:  Tommy Dickson/Inpho

‘For us it is tough enough to do our job and tough enough for me to have a conversation as I did with Dev’

George Beamish in action against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground during the Lions tour of Australia and New Zealand on August 30th, 1930. Australia won the Test match 6-5. Photograph: Popperfoto via Getty Images

A ‘Boys Own’ life on and off the rugby pitch has been chronicled in a new book

Lynne Cantwell: “There is a reality that there wasn’t any solid structures in place in rugby at that time and there wasn’t huge  changes made afterwards.” Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Former star fearful that all the progress Ireland made in heady days will be wasted

 Nick Kyrgios launched an expletive-ridden rant at  Irish umpire Fergus Murphy at Queens in June after missing a set point against Roberto Carballes Baena. Photograph:  Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Hot-tempered Kyrgios slapped with fines of over €100k after abusing long-serving umpire at Cincinnati Masters

South Africa-born Jean Kleyn (third right) lines out with the Ireland team ahead of the game against Italy at the Aviva Stadium last Saturday. Photograph: Donall Farmer/PA Wire

Ultan Dillane released from Rugby World Cup squad while South African lock is retained

Peter O’Mahony:  the Ireland forward played an Under-20 World Cup in Japan some years ago. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Munster forward says tough pre-season will bring Ireland up to speed for Japan

Mike Haley in action on his Ireland debut against Italy at the Aviva stadium. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Munster back’s versatility could stand to him as coach prepares to trim World Cup squad

Dave Kearney Ireland’s second try against Italy. Photograph: Getty Images

Italy coach relatively happy despite defeat to Ireland in Dublin

 Andrew Conway dives over to score his side’s third try. Photograph:  Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Man of the match Andrew Conway makes a case for his place on the plane to Japan

Ireland’s Jack Conan in action against Italy in last year’s Six Nations. Photograph:    Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Number eight believes he is capable of locking down position in Ireland’s RWC squad

Ireland’s Jack Conan is hoping to take his place in Joe Schmidt’s squad for the Rugby World Cup. Photo: Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images

Ireland international was involved in warm up games but missed out on World Cup

Joe Ward beside  Lou DiBella of DiBella Entertainment as he signs his first professional contract in the Westbury Hotel in Dublin yesterday. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

European amateur champion will fight out of New York and Boston

Michael Conlan (L) stopped Diego Alberto Ruiz in the ninth in Belfast. Photograph: Jonathan Porter/Inpho

Featherweight earns ninth round stoppage win over Diego Alberto Ruiz in Falls Park

 Michael Conlan celebrates after his win over Ruben Garcia Hernandez in New York on St Patrick’s  Day. Photograph: Emily Harney/Inpho

Belfast fighter to enjoy home comforts at Falls Park

Kellie Harrington will not fight at the European Championships in Spain due to a hand injury. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Lightweight world champion will wait to defend her title in Russia in October

Golden moment: Novak Djokovic after beating Roger Federer in an epic final. Photograph: Getty

Djokovic equals 1980s king of cool Bjorn Borg with five Wimbledon titles under his belt

Novak Djokovic poses with the winner’s trophy on the balcony of the club house after beating Roger Federer to win Wimbledon. Photo: Daniel Leal-Olivas/Getty Images

Longest final in history was eventually decided on a tie break after 12-12 in the final set

On the run: Serena Williams is outplayed during the women’s singles final on Saturday against Simona Halep. Photograph: PA

With just 12 matches since January the 23-time Grand Slam finalist failed to equal record

Simona Halep celebrates winning the women’s singles final following victory over Serena Williams. Photograph: PA

Williams remains one victory away from finally equalling Margaret Court’s record


No crowd favourite but another Grand Slam puts her level with Margaret Court on 24

Roger Federer celebrates match point in his men’s singles semi-final win over Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon. Photo: Carl Recine/Reuters

Swiss player got the better of his old rival Rafael Nadal in a thriller on Centre Court

Rafael Nadal is congratulated by Roger Federer after winning their their match in 2008. Photograph: Getty Images

Tremors from their epic 2008 final are still felt among the Wimbledon halls

 Serena Williams celebrates winning a point against Czech Republic’s Barbora Strycova during their women’s singles semi-final match. Photograph: Getty Images

She has come within a match of equaling the record of Margaret Court’s 24 Grand Slams

Serena Williams celebrates her victory over Alison Riske in their Wimbledon quarter-final. Photograph: Nic Bothma/EPA

Veteran has fought her way into last four with single goal in mind: equalling Court

Roger Federer celebrates beating Kei Nishikori during their men’s singles quarter-final match at Wimbledon. Photo: Adrian Dennis/Getty Images

Defending champion Novak Djokovic also through to the last four after his win

 Roger Federer  celebrates his win over Matteo Berrettini  in their fourth round match at  Wimbledon.   Photogrraph: Epa/Nic Bothma

Both players will be tested by Sam Querry and Kei Nishikori on Wednesday

Serena Williams of the US celebrates winning her quarter final match against Alison Riske at Wimbledon. Photo: Hannah McKay/Reuters

American overcame fellow countrywoman Alison Riske in a three-set marathon

Rafael Nadal removes his head band after his match on day seven. Photograph: PA

Nadal dismissive of the idea the three are sending out a message to rest of the draw

 Cori Gauff during her women’s singles fourth round match against Simona Halep. Photograph: Getty Images

Last year’s French Open champion was the first top-10 opponent she had ever faced

Roger Federer seemed to be in cruise control against Luca Pouille. Photograph:  Glyn Kirk/AFP/Getty Images

Rest of field yet to pose real threat to champion trio of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic

Coco  Gauff  arrives at Aorangi Park for a practice session at Wimbledon. ‘I don’t really believe in fate and destiny.’ Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Teenager faces Halep in last 16 while title contenders quietly move through draw

Cori Gauff celebrates her victory over Slovenia’s Polona Hercog. Photograph: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty

15-year-old saves two match points against Polona Hercog as fairytale run continues

Novak Djokovic survived a slow start to beat Hubert Hurkacz in four sets. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty

Top seed gets off to a slow start after an issue with his cap before blitzing Pole in four sets

Rafael Nadal celebrates beating Nick Kyrgios on day four of Wimbledon. Photograph: Adam Davy/PA

Australian shows Grand Slam potential but can’t force relentless winner into a fifth set

Serena Williams needed three sets to see off Kaja Juvan at Wimbledon. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty

18-year-old threatens latest Wimbledon upset before seven-time winner finds her mojo

 Cori Gauff in action during her second round match against Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia. Photograph: Getty Images

That’s six sets for two matches so far and sweetly into the third round for Djokovic

Dave Miley: “After Wimbledon I will be travelling to 45 countries.” Photograph: Rod Leon

Miley says his nomination is from Tennis Ireland, and he has support of OFI president Sarah Keane and Sport Minister Shane Ross

Dominic Thiem of Austria waves to the crowd as he leaves the court after loosing to Sam Querrey. Photograph: Getty Images

Roger Federer asked to explain what is going on with seeds five, six and seven falling

 Russia’s Maria Sharapova in action during her first round match against France’s Pauline Parmentier. Photograph: Toby Melville/Reuters

There was no amount of talking to the wall that could help Maria Sharapova this time

Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece acknowledges the fans as he leaves the court after defeat to Thomas Fabbiano. Photograph: Getty Images

Both the of world’s brightest talents failed to find their way past the Wimbledon foothills

 Cori Gauff after her win against Venus Williams at Wimbledon. Photograph: Reuters

The youngest player in the Open Era to qualify moved into round two of Wimbledon

 Ashleigh Barty: “It is always a goal to try and be the best. It’s ultimately why we train, why we compete and play, but for it to happen in this way has been amazing.” Photograph:  Shaun Botterill/Getty

Talented Australian has overcome adversity to rise to the top of the world rankings

 Marian Vajda, Goran Ivanisevic and Novak Djokovic during a practice session ahead of action at Wimbledon. Photograph:  Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

It’s been a stellar year for the world number one who remains as hungry as ever for success

Ireland’s Kurt Walker celebrates with his gold medal at the 2019 European Games. Photo: Soenar Chamid/Inpho

Lisburn native won on a unanimous decision against Mykola Butsenko in Minsk

Ireland’s Kellie Harrington was forced to withdraw from her women’s lightweight final in Minsk. Photo: Soenar Chamid/Inpho

Kurt Walker is Ireland’s last gold medal hope in the men’s bantamweight division

Stefanos Tsitsipas: Currently ranked sixth in the world and seeded seven for Wimbledon, the 6ft4in Greek player is as elegant as he is powerful. Photograph:  Adam Pretty/Getty Images

Since 2002 Federer, Djokovic, Nadal and Murray have been only winners of men's title

Ireland’s Kellie Harrington in action against  Agnes Alexiusson of Sweden in the lightweight semi-final at the European Games in Minsk, Belarus. Photograph: Soenar Chamid/Inpho

Michaela Walsh and Kurt Walker also make it through to finals in Minsk

Joey Carbery: “If you see something, have a go for it, and obviously if it doesn’t work out it’s your responsibility. But there’s never ever really a boundary put on you.” Photograph: Getty Images

‘You can certainly benefit from being a 10 playing fullback because you can kind of get a feel for the game’

Kellie Harrington: preparing for this year’s World Championships, which are scheduled for Ulan Ude, Russia in Octoberthe. Photograph: Inpho

Executive director warns AIBA is nearing insolvency due to €15 debts

A view of the draw for Pool Four of the Champions Cup which pits Munster against formidable holders  Saracens, Racing and Ospreys. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Van Graan’s men draw the short straw while Cullen’s Leinster will be pleased

Munster will face Owen Farrell and Maro Itoje when they take on defending European champions Saracens. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Johnny Watterson looks at the European opposition the Irish will face next season

Munster’s Conor Murray after his team’s defeat to Saracens in the Champions Cup semi-final. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Last year’s beaten Champions Cup finalists Leinster will face Lyon and Northampton

La Rochelle head coach Ronan O’Gara may have to face  his old club Munster in the next Champions Cup. Photograph:   Andrew Cornaga/Inpho

French club’s new head coach’s first big test could be a return to Thomond Park

Former Australia outhalf Stephen Larkham has joined the Munster coaching staff. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Former Australia outhalf has previously worked as attack coach for the Wallabies

Chloe Magee: “Playing well and performing to our best there is no reason we can’t make it. But we have to get a lot of big performances out over the next 12 months.” Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Ireland’s badminton star joins brother Sam in bid to qualify for the mixed doubles in Tokyo

Sarah Keane: “I haven’t spoken to the EOC president myself. He [Kocijancic] has advised that it is standard to invite their former presidents to events  . .” Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

European Olympic Committee continues to stand behind its former president

Ireland’s Ryan Baird receives a red card during the  World  U20 Championship match against Australia  at the  CRAI Stadium in  Sante Fe, Argentina. Photograph: Pablo Gasparini/Inpho

Australia score three tries in four-minute spell during second half

Katie Taylor poses with her belts at   the County Club, Co Meath. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Belgian deserves another shot as Bray boxer says bout in Ireland is not in her near future

Roisin Upton, Ayeisha McFerran,  Gillian Pinder, Anna O’Flanagan and Katie Mullan of the Ireland Women’s Hockey team.    Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Team ranked 8th in the world take on 22nd-placed Malaysia in FIH series in Banbridge

Eugene McGee’s hat-trick against France came on his 280 cap for Ireland. Photograph: Rowland White/Inpho/Presseye

Banbridge player earns 280th international cap in second match of series

Katie Taylor in action against  Delfine Persoon during their world lightweight title contest  at Madison Square Garden in New York. Photograph: Tom Hogan/Inpho

Boxer’s camp pour cold water on idea of rematch with Delfine Persoon in Belgium

 Pat Hickey  at the inaugural European Games four years ago in Baku. Photograph. Inpho

Former OCI president invited to attend as a guest of European Olympic Committees

 Republic of Ireland captain Katie McCabe with team-mate and partner Ruesha Littlejohn, right, at the Aviva Stadium. reland’s largest insurer are lighting up the stadium for the first time with the rainbow collours  Dublin [Gay] Pride until June 8th. Photograph:  Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Ireland women’s captain says ‘speaking out about it is important, I’m not ashamed of who I am’

Jacob Stockdale in action against Wales. He has scored 14 tries in 17 Tests for Ireland. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Deep Christian faith underpins the prolific try-scoring winger’s perspective on life

Ireland’s Gary O’Donovan and Paul O’Donovan competing in Serbia. The big target is next year at the Tokyo Olympics. Photograph: Srdjan Stevanovic/Inpho

Brothers’ jovial personas hide focus and work rate which allows them take on the best

The Sport Ireland Institute’s High Performance Unit. Photograph: Crispin Rodwell

After a difficult gestation and birth, the Abbotstown sports campus is now delivering for Irish sport

Scrum coach John Fogarty is leaving the province after the Rugby World Cup. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/EPA

James Ryan leads new generation who will want to know exactly what they can do better

Michael Conlan lost a highly contentious decision to Vladimir Nikitin at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Rematch in the professional ranks will take place at Belfast’s Falls Park on August 3rd

Tadhg Furlong takes on Lions teammate Mako Vunipola on Saturday. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

Johnny Watterson runs the rule over the Leinster XV bidding to defend their crown

Robbie Henshaw has returned from injury to join  Garry Ringrose in the Leinster midfield. Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Combination with Garry Ringrose will be key in Champions Cup final against Saracens

 Jérôme Garcès in action during the Saracens versus Munster clash. The French referee is known for his liberal officiating of the breakdown. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Leinster camp fully aware of the French referee’s particular style in advance of cup final

Leinster hooker Sean Cronin has been struggling with a calf injury. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Stuart Lancaster also said that Rhys Ruddock should be available for selection

Cork Constitution’s Sean French celebrates as he scores against Dublin University in All-Ireland League Division 1A semi-final. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Cork side will look to make fourth consecutive final one to relish against old rivals

Scrumhalf Conor Murray and winger Keith Earls will both start against Benetton at Thomond Park. Photograph: Inpho

Pro 14 quarter-final preview: Munster v Benetton, Thomond Park, 3pm (Live eir sport 1)

James Ryan: “I think Saracens are a different beast to Toulouse. We definitely have to crank it up a few notches as they are the only unbeaten team in Europe this year.” Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

‘We love expressing ourselves with ball in hand. We’ve guys who love playing rugby’

Glenannne’s Shane O’Donoghue and Luke Madeley of Three Rock Rovers in action during last year’s EHYL Trophy Final. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Grange Road side face the hosts in EHYL Champions Trophy semi-final

Ulster’s Darren Cave and Michael Lowry fail to stop Leinster’s Fergus McFadden from scoring a try. McFadden has been banned for six weeks following an incident in the same race. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Leinster player has been banned for act of foul play involving the head against Ulster

 Members of the St Michael’s Rowing Club who will  defend their title in the Celtic Challenge rowing from Arklow to Aberystwyth, a 155 km journey taking between 20 to 24 hours for the rotating crew of  12 to complete. Photograph: Alan Betson

St Michael's aiming to defend their title in gruelling Irish Sea crossing

Jack Carty: one of the contenders for the Zurich Players’ Player of the Year award following his impressive form for Connacht this season. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Ireland international retains ambitions of making it to the World Cup in Japan

James Ryan is one of four nominations for the Zurich Players’ Player of the Year Award to be announced on May 15th. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Peter O’Mahony, Jack Carty and Tadhg Beirne also up for Players’ Player of the Year

Ulster’s Eric O’Sullivan in action against Leinster in the Champions Cup. ‘Just to think you are on Joe Schmidt’s radar is pretty encouraging.’ Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Ulster prop keen to keep learning in breakthrough season after successful move north

Sean Dancer has been named as the new head coach to the Ireland women’s team. Photograph:  Simon Watts/Hockey NZ

Former Australia U21 player was assistant with the New Zealand women’s team

Rhys McClenaghan in Dublin’s Docklands where the Irish Olympic Team for Tokyo unveiled a new partnership with jobs site Indeed. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho.

Belfast gymnast makes no secret of his medal ambitions at next year’s Games

Pentathlete Natalya Coyle and gymnast Rhys McClenaghan at the Olympic Federation of Ireland  announcement of Indeed as the new sponsor. Photograph:  Chris Bellew/Fennell Photography

Two times Olympian became anaemic ‘and I was getting injured and sick all the time’

Conor Murray and his dejected Munster team-mates after the defeat to Saracens at the  Ricoh Arena, Coventry.  Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Van Graan offers no excuses and admits formidable Saracens were the better team

Saracens man of the match Billy Vunipola is confronted by a Munster fan after his side’s victory in the Heineken Champions Cup semi-final at the  Ricoh Arena. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Choice struck a jarring note after a hugely controversial week for the England international

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