John Cooney in action for Ulster against Freddie Burns of Bath during the Champions Cup game at the  Kingspan Stadium in  Belfast in January. Photograph:  Ryan Byrne/Inpho

It’s always worth stressing that there are far, far bigger issues in the country and the planet this year than the form of a rugby player. But of all (...)

Munster’s Ben Healy,  last year’s Ireland U-20s outhalf, in action in the Guinness PRO14 against Edinburgh. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Securing a regular high-level playing outlet for the premier young talent in Irish rugby remains a conundrum for the IRFU. There are a finite number (...)

Munster coach Stephen Larkham has made four changes to his team for Saturday’s match. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Munster have made four changes to the side that defeated Dragons in the opening round of the Pro14 for the trip to Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium against (...)

Ireland outhalf Jack Carty sets up the attack for the game’s first try during Ireland’s 22-17 win over Wales   in Cardiff. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Of all his birthdays Jack Carty is unlikely to ever forget his 27th. He wore the fabled Irish number 10 jersey for the first time, was part of a winni(...)

Connacht’s Caolin Blade looks set to be included in the Ireland squad for the opening two Six Nations matches. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Caolin Blade, the uncapped 24-year-old Connacht scrumhalf, is set to be included in the Irish squad for their defence of the forthcoming Six Nations w(...)

Connacht head coach Andy Friend and backs coach Nigel Carolan during the   captain’s run at NMU Madibaz Stadium, Port Elizabeth, South Africa, in November 2018. Photograph:  James Crombie/Inpho

Coaching is a precarious business, and as a long-serving director of the Connacht academy Nigel Carolan had that rare commodity – job security. He cou(...)

Connacht’s Paul Boyle in action against  Southern Kings. “He carries hard, he tackles hard, he knows his role and he knows where he’s meant to be,” says coach Andy Friend.   Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Paul Boyle has never shirked a challenge or cowed in the face of adversity on a rugby pitch. So, when a contract didn’t materialise at Leinster as he (...)

The Central Stadium in Krasnoyarsk, Russia, where Connacht will take on Yenisey-STM in the Challenge Cup. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Sending Connacht to Siberia this week has become less a gift trip than an onerous expedition. Next week the province face into one of the harshest (...)

 Connacht head coach Pat Lam (centre) happy with the his Academy players. Photogrpah: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Connacht have announced the the contract extensions of five of its current crop of players. The Academy set-up has produced another crop(...)

 Connacht’s Tiernan O’Halloran supported by Jake Heenan, Kieran Marmion and John Muldoon. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Connachthave confirmed new deals for Tiernan O’Halloran, Miah Nikora and Jack Carty, all of whom are Irish born or Irish qualified in Nikora(...)

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