Tana Umaga

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  Ireland’s players form a guard of honour for New Zealand at the end of the match. Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

Warning to offshore Kiwis: return home predicting a New Zealand loss at your peril. Definitely don’t do it on national television. The grief! Before(...)

Tana Umaga and Brian O’Driscoll perform a Maori Hongi at a media event ahead of Ireland’s Guinness Series meeting with the All Blacks. Photo: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Rarely, if ever, has there been such a bitter and controversial fallout from an incident on a rugby field in the history of the sport. The act of foul(...)

Ben Whitehouse was in the eye of the storm during Saturday’s Guinness Pro14   clash between Leinster and Munster at Aviva Stadium.  Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Ben Whitehouse, an appreciation Irish referees would leap into a Las Vegas octagon over Leinster versus Munster but it’s a rite of passage. The Welsh(...)

New Zealand’s Malakai Fekitoa celebrates  with Anton Lienert-Brown and Israel Dagg after scoring a  try against Ireland at the Aviva Stadium to avenge their Chicago loss two weeks earlier. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

By this point a dozen years ago, the Lions tour was miserable. There was only a dead rubber to look forward to, and the Lions were way off the All Bla(...)

Girvan Dempsey has been shadowing Ireland coach Joe Schmidt. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Next man sitting the Joe Schmidt refresher course is Rob Penney. Actually, the former Munster coach is hosting Ireland at his NTT Shining Arcs. The (...)

Dave Ellis joined the Blues after three-and-a-half years as Connacht skills coach. Photograph: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty

As ever, Dave Ellis cuts a slightly diminutive and low-key, if mischievous, figure amongst the comparative monsters in the Blues’ playing squad. If yo(...)

Tana Umaga’s Blues take on the Lions at Eden Park on Wednesday. Photograph: Hannah Peters/Getty

It hasn’t taken long for the bad blood from the 2005 Lions tour to New Zealand to resurface. Granted, this is as much a matter of circumstances as any(...)

Sonny Bill Williams has been named in the Blues starting XV for their clash with the Lions. Photograph: Hannah Peters/Getty

It is a measure of the importance which coach Tana Umaga and the Blues attach to their encounter with the Lions at Eden Park on Wednesday that akin to(...)

The All Blacks expect Warren Gatland to stick with his familiar tactics. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Thursday’s front page of the New Zealand Herald probably summed up the phoney war to date as well as anything. To the backdrop of a picture of Warren (...)

“If the All Blacks have a point of vulnerability, it has typically been their first outing of the season.” Photograph: Gabriel Bouys/AFP/Getty Images

The British & Irish Lions should take it as a mark of respect that the All Blacks have scrambled a game against Samoa ahead of the Test series. I(...)

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