Barrett Beauden

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Ireland’s  Conor Murray  is tackled by New Zealand flanker Sam Cane. “Underhill and Curry have been pretty impressive,” said Cane. “They’ve both got a huge appetite for hard work, very good skill sets.” Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP/Gettty

It would probably only deepen the wounds from last Saturday’s quarter-final in Tokyo Stadium were England to dethrone New Zealand in next Saturday’s p(...)

Joe Schmidt’s Ireland tenure came to an end with Saturday’s defeat to the All Blacks. Photograph: Adam Davy/PA

Schmidt Happens He shook up the world order. Altered the way Irish rugby is perceived from Samoa to Bloemfontein. He gifted the most important people(...)

Ireland players face the New Zealand Haka before kick-off in Tokyo. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

The player who illustrated the true difference between the rugby cultures of New Zealand and Ireland was nowhere to be seen on Saturday night. Rieko I(...)

Ardie Savea is tackled by Iain Henderson during New Zealand’s win over Ireland. Photograph: Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty

Beauden Barrett He was awarded the man of the match, an award that could equally have gone to Ardie Savea or Aaron Smith. A glorious skill-set - he s(...)

 New Zealand’s Matt Todd scores a try in the second half. Photograph: Getty Images

Black is the colour. So Joe Schmidt’s six years in charge of Ireland draws to a profoundly disappointing close with the velvet colour of his native Ne(...)

Johnny Sexton during Friday’s captain’s run at the Tokyo Stadium. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Rugby World Cup quarter-final: New Zealand v Ireland Kick-off: 11.15am Irish time, Saturday October 19th Venue: Tokyo Stadium How to follow: The Iris(...)

Ardie Savea, Sonny Bill Williams and George Bridge train ahead of Saturday’s clash with Ireland. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

President John F Kennedy famously said “the time to fix the roof is when the sun is shining.” In other words, when you know an approaching event will (...)

New Zealand blindside wing forward Ardie Savea was phenomenal as South Africa ran riot over the All Blacks in those opening 20 minutes of their group clash. Photograph: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Practise the skill and not the drill. And, of course, the crucial decision-making process. In attack or defence, when hunting to convert pressure into(...)

 Johnny Sexton has again showed how vital he is to Ireland’s cause on the pitch during thei Rugby World Cup. Photograph: Hiroshi Yamamura/EPA

15 Rob Kearney (Leinster) Age: 33 Height: 6’1” Weight: 95kg (14st, 11lbs) Caps: 94 After going nearly four years without a try, Kearney is now scoring(...)

 Beauden Barrett and Richie Mo’unga of the All Blacks run through drills during a  training session at Tatsuminomori Seaside Park  in Tokyo. Photograph: Hannah Peters/Getty Images

15 Beauden Barrett (Hurricanes) Age: 28 Height: 6’2” Weight: 91kg (14st, 5lbs) Caps: 80 The world’s best outhalf is now doing a pretty good job from f(...)

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