Stuart Lancaster

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 Leinster’s James Lowe  breaks with the ball to score his first try during the Champions Cup win against Wasps at the RDS. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Talk about throwing down the gauntlet. Such was the scale of Leinster’s 52-3 win over Wasps on Friday night that when rival coaching staffs began asse(...)

 Geordan Murphy: “There’s always pressure. My good buddy James Ferris always told me, ‘Pressure is for tyres’. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

In early September Geordan and Anneka were christening Rex’s little brother Oscar when the Leicester board came calling. Matt O’Connor had been sacke(...)

Tadhg Beirne: his  incredible engine gets him into situations where an extra set of hands become a vital link. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Paddy Johns has no knee cartilage but the 50-year-old remains an iron man. Literally. The former Ireland captain does triathlons in his spare time awa(...)

Joey Carbery has played  267 minutes for Munster so far this season. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

The tradition of Aviva Stadium matches with Munster, their popular reach and brawny size, have never failed to almost fill the Dublin ground. The tet(...)

Stade Français’ Paris French centre Gael Fickou eludes Racing 92 number eight Antonie Claassen during the French Top 14 clash at Jean-Bouin Stadium in Paris. Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP/Getty

Donnacha Ryan enjoyed the bragging rights after Sunday’s Parisian duel in the French Top 14 as he helped Racing 92 to a 17-16 victory over a Stade Fra(...)

 Leinster head coach Leo Cullen: ‘Players need challenges the whole time, too, and I am not necessarily the best person to challenge them in all areas.’ Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

As the season cranks up in customary fashion with the onset of the interprovincial derbies and then the return to Europe, so Leinster’s opponents will(...)

At the launch of the Heineken Champions Cup and  European Rugby Challenge Cup in Dublin were  Jordi Murphy (Ulster), Jarrad Butler (Connacht), Jonathan Sexton (Leinster) and Peter O’Mahony (Munster). Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

It told you much about Johnny Sexton’s mentality that when he was asked about Leinster defending their Heineken Champions Cup trophy at Wednesday’s to(...)

Leinster’s Johnny Sexton goes over for a try against Edinburgh despite the tackle of Juan Pablo Socino. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

  Leinster 31  Edinburgh 7 Too many chefs can perhaps spoil a broth, but already the early signs are that the co-opting of Felipe Contepo(...)

Jordan Larmour: “The things in my game that need work, I want to try and bring them up and be more of a rounded player.” Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

As namechecks go being likened in style on a rugby pitch to New Zealand’s will-o’-the-wisp Damian McKenzie is certainly not a hardship especially when(...)

Dominic Ryan: forced to end his rugby career due to the impact of concussion. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

News of Dominic Ryan’s enforced and premature retirement from rugby at the age of 28 due to concussion issues – revealed in The Irish Times last Satur(...)

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