Franco Smith

31 results

Ireland’s Bundee Aki leaves the field after being shown a red card by referee Mathieu Raynal. Photograph: Inpho

“I’m sure I’ll wake up soon, it will be Monday all over again and nothing will have even started.” The gist of trainer Henry de Bromhead’s words, aft(...)

Ireland captain Johnny Sexton in action during Saturday’s win in Rome. Photograph: Inpho

Ireland did all that was asked of them at Stadio Olimpico. Head coach Andy Farrell capped two hugely promising players in Craig Casey and Ryan Baird, (...)

Craig Casey during Ireland’s captain’s run at the  Stadio Olimpico, Rome.  Casey is one of   two uncapped 21-year-olds on the bench, the other being  Ryan Baird. Photograph: Ryan Bailey/Inpho/Irfu

Italy v Ireland, Stadio Olimpico. Kick-off: 3.15pm local time (2.15pm Irish). On TV: Live on Virgin Media One and ITV1. Ireland’s biennial trek to th(...)

Jonathan Davies returns for Wales against England on Saturday. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Jonathan Davies back for Wales The spotlight will be on George North on Saturday, as he leads Wales out against England ahead of his 100th Welsh cap.(...)

Stephen Varney of Italy passes the ball during the Guinness Six Nations match between England and Italy at Twickenham on February 13th. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Ireland will be in familiar if also conflicting territory at the Stadio Olimpico next Saturday, ie both no-win and must-win. Anything less than a vict(...)

Keith Earls goes over for Ireland’s third try in the 2019 Six Nations game against Italy at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Keith Earls and Denis Hickie share the cumulative record of eight tries for Ireland players in internationals against Italy and the Munster wing will (...)

France’s Gregory Alldritt is tackled by Billy Burns of Ireland during the Six Nations game at the Aviva Stadium. photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

France are growing before our eyes but Ireland assisted the process. Ending a 10-year winless streak in Dublin removes another millstone from around t(...)

Matthieu Jalibert will offset the blow of missing Romain Ntamack for France. Photograph: Franck Fife/Getty/AFP

The pecking order has never appeared so clear-cut. Like never before, last year’s Six Nations is still fresh in the memory, having finished less than (...)

Paolo Garbisi attacks for Italy against Ireland in Dublin. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

To have any chance at all of breaking a 27-game losing streak in the Six Nations, Paolo Garbisi must embody all the great Azzurri 10s that came before(...)

Benetton’s Riccardo Favretto is a key player for Italy. Photograph: Inpho

Have Italy realised the Six Nations Championship is no country for old men, so to speak? It seems that way. If Chelsea are known as the Pensioners in(...)

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