Aly Muldowney

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 John Muldoon celebrates with Eric Elwood after Connacht’s victory over Leinster in Edinburgh. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

John Muldoon drove from his home to the Sportsground, arriving shortly after 8.45am, parked his car, walked back to the main entrance and into the Co(...)

Cian Kelleher: to  make his competitive debut for Connacht. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

At Connacht’s celebratory homecoming last May, John Muldoon declared: “We will see you all in September. We have a title to defend!” Well, the champi(...)

Connacht coach Pat Lam: “We’re expecting a really fired-up Glasgow team, which is a great way to start the season.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

That Connacht will be targeted in a way they’ve never experienced before will become manifest from the moment they kick off their defence of the Guin(...)

Bordeaux-Begles’ outhalf Ian Madigan: “I feel really good, I’ve no injuries, it’s a fast track and good weather, a good dry ball, so I was delighted to get out there.” Photograph: Nicolas Tucat/AFP/Getty Images

Ian Madigan said that the demands of the French rugby season were going to mean that he will be rotated throughout a gruelling campaign that could run(...)

Louis Picamoles and Johnny Sexton wil meet again when Leinster take on Nortahmpton in Pool 4 of the Champions Cup. Photograph:   Loic Venance/AFP/Getty Images)

There is no obvious ‘Pool of Death’, but the four Irish provinces face a tall order to qualify It is four years since Leinster won the then Heineke(...)

Had Connacht lost to Leinster they could have become like so many teams that get to a final and lose; they could have drifted away disillusioned. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

There was a subtle change to Connacht’s method of attack on Saturday which exposed the Leinster defence. More often than not Aly Muldowney carried or (...)

Connacht celebrate with the Guinness Pro12 trophy. The province have a new breed of young player, along with a core of indigenous players, who now expect the province to be contenders. Photograph: Dan Sheridan

Memories are made of this and therein, perhaps, lies the greatest legacy of Connacht’s stunning success. Their spectacular triumph, from Irish rugby’s(...)

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

The Quinn Roux numbers do not stack up. And they should, considering his 6ft 5in frame is filled by 124 kilograms of Pretoria muscle. Having been le(...)

Matt Healy celebrates scoring Connacht’s third try during the Guinness Pro 12 Final at Murrayfield on Saturday. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Luke Fitzgerald’s grade two medial tear, sustained during Saturday’s Pro 12 final in Edinburgh, looks set to see Matt Healy tour South Africa. The hu(...)

Connacht’s Niyi Adeolokun finishes off a lovely piece of skill on the right wing to beat Eoin Reddan to the try line at Murrayfield. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Connacht 20 Leinster 10 Not even Connacht’s storied season could have scripted a better ending than this. By the end, their momentum, on and off the (...)

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