New Zealand

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 Lions head coach Warren Gatland: “The frustrating thing for us is the amount of blocking that’s going on, the off-the-ball stuff.”  Photograph: INPHO/Dan Sheridan

The temperature is rising in the New Zealand winter. Both the All Blacks and the Lions ramped up their performances over the weekend, as did their res(...)

Ronan O’Gara and Dan Carter  at Dun Laoghaire Golf Club, Enniskerry, Co Wicklow for the SoftCo Foundation Gala Dinner Launch.   Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Dan Carter and Ronan O’Gara can fill a room. They walk in and inflate in size, seize the space. Today they are talking Lions and All Blacks and in a r(...)

Brothers Jordie Barrett of the Hurricanes, Beauden Barrett of the Hurricanes and Scott Barrett of the Crusaders are all set to line up for the All Blacks against Samoa on Friday. Photograph: Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images

The All Blacks’ coaching staff will use Friday’s game against Samoa as a full dress rehearsal for the majority of their frontline team in readiness fo(...)

 All Black captain Kieran Read performs the haka before the game against Wales last summer at Eden Park  in Auckland, New Zealand. Photograph:  Phil Walter/Getty Images

Ronan O’Gara’s second of three Lions tours was in the darkest imaginable New Zealand winter. So, he has a feel for it. “The thing about it is it’s p(...)

Stuart Hogg and Jonathan Sexton. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Imagine the British and Irish Lions tour in reverse. Warren Gatland picks a 30-man squad to be ensconced in the Vale of Glamorgan. Now leave them the(...)

Dan Biggar: “The most important thing is not the battle for places but that we do everything on and off the field and back whoever is playing in all the games.” Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

One of the major bonuses from a Lions perspective last weekend was to have all three of their outhalves in camp. Johnny Sexton and Owen Farrell know e(...)

Ronan O’Gara leaves the field against the New South Wales Waratahs in 2001. Photograph: Getty Images

Violent. Intense. Intoxicating. And so another Lions tour is sprung on two hemispheres. A chain of warm up matches whet appetites before Warren Gatlan(...)

Garry Ringrose: “The best example of a player who was unlucky not to be picked in the original squad is Garry Ringrose, but if in the last week the weather forecast says it will be pelting it down, it could be that someone else comes in instead of him,” says Lions coach Warren Gatland.

Warren Gatland is to draw up a standby list for his British and Irish Lions squad, but he will keep its contents private so as to avoid becoming a hos(...)

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt: “We’ve got a few selection headaches and that’s exactly what you need.” Photograph:  Dan Sheridan/Inpho

There was a pep in Ireland’s step at Monaghan RFC yesterday. A better injury profile, a change of scene, a run-out against the Irish Under-20s, an ent(...)

Dan Carter released a social media statement on Friday morning. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Former New Zealand outhalf Dan Carter has apologised for his actions after reports he was stopped for drink-driving by police in Paris. The 34-year-o(...)

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