Dan Carter

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The new head coach of the All Blacks, Ian Foster, during a New Zealand training session in Japan. Photograph: Hannah Peters/Getty Images

Ian Foster will be the first All Blacks boss without previous international head coaching experience since 2003 when he takes over next year but few (...)

New Zealand captain Kieran Read after the defeat to England in the Rugby World Cup semi-final at the  Yokohama International Stadium. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Some get to pen their own exits, be it Brian O’Driscoll to Derek Pender in our neck of the woods, or in Rugby World Cups most recently there was the A(...)

Irish players are cared for better than any other team in the world, so where were they at psychologically?  Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

As the nightmare unfolded I kept hearing two voices in my head. Over and over again came the words of Shane Lowry and Steve Hansen. “Nobody tells you(...)

The Ireland and New Zealand encounters define the Joe Schmidt era.

Joe Schmidt’s decade in Ireland has yielded unprecedented success ever since Johnny Sexton orchestrated Leinster’s miracle revival against Northampton(...)

Nigel Owens on duty during the Ireland  versus New Zealand game at the Aviva Stadium on November 2013. Photograph: James Crombie/inpho

Time was when Nigel Owens was announced as the referee for any match involving Ireland or one of the four provinces, this was welcomed by the teams an(...)

“Samoa were really physical against Scotland the other night but the points came in the last 12 minutes because the Samoan boys were out on their feet.” Photograph:  Craig Mercer/MB Media/ Getty Images

Guaranteed as Kobe beef: the Munster-heavy Irish pack will shed bucket loads of lean meat at the Misaki Stadium. Ex-pats chewing tenderloin outdoors (...)

Ireland’s players take part in a training session at the Steelers training ground in Kobe. Photograph: Getty Images

Johnny Sexton will captain Ireland for the first time against Russia inside the sweltering Kobe Misaki stadium on Thursday evening. “It’s a massive h(...)

Ireland’s head coach Joe Schmidt and outhalf Jonathan Sexton take part in a training session at the Steelers Training Ground in Kobe this morning. Photograph: Getty Images

Ireland have made 11 changes in their starting XV to face Russia this Thursday in Kobe (kick-off 7.15pm local time/11.15am Irish time), with just four(...)

Ireland James Ryan takes part in a captain’s run training session ahead of the Japan game. Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP/Getty Images

For the second time in this World Cup, a planned open Irish training session has been closed, further limiting their contact with the public at large.(...)

Japan lock Luke Thompson has great memories from his time in Ireland in 1999. Photograph: Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images

“Arigato gozaimasu.” Joe Schmidt speaks more Japanese than his opposite number Jamie Joseph. After Schmidt’s media masterclass in Yumeria almost spinn(...)

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