Jimmy Gopperth

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Ulster’s Charles Piutau in action during training ahead  of their  European Champions Cup opener against Wasps. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Ulster v Wasps Venue: Kingspan Stadium. Kick-off: 7.45pm. On TV: Live on BT Sport. This isn’t a bad old way to kick off the 23rd edition of the Eu(...)

Dwayne Peel is hoping Ulster get off to a strong start against Wasps on Friday. Photograph: Jonathan Porter/Inpho

Though you won’t find Ulster actually admitting it, their opening game in the European Champions Cup against Wasps comes with the notion this is a goo(...)

Exeter Chiefs’ Gareth Steenson celebrates with the trophy after winning the Aviva Premiership Final against Wasps  at Twickenham. Photograph:  Mike Egerton/PA Wire

Exeter 23 Wasps 20 (after extra-time) Exeter captain Gareth Steenson kicked a penalty three minutes from the end of extra-time to see the Chiefs crow(...)

An emotional Ruan Pienaar after his last game for Ulster against Leinster at the  Kingspan Stadium. Photograph: Darren Kidd/Presseye/Inpho

Well, Ruan Pienaar’s hugely emotional farewell proved it, as if it needed proving. Too choked with tears to even put into words how he felt in the i(...)

Leinster’s Joey Carbery celebrates with Fergus McFadden after his try. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

The filter of victory allows for a little more introspection, where the little blemishes of performance are softened by the outcome. Leinster head c(...)

Wasps’ Willie Le Roux scores a try but has it disallowed by referee Nigel Owens during their Champions Cup clash with Leinster. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Wasps coach Dai Young refused to blame Willie Le Roux for this Champions Cup quarter-final exit despite the South African fullback losing possession i(...)

Marty Moore of Wasps in full flow: “Regardless of what’s happened, I’m happier for being here than I would have been back home.” Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

When the uncapped JJ Hanrahan was interviewed by Second Captains this week, the big question was how Kerry’s gifted play-maker found life in Northampt(...)

Two of Wasps’ three playmakers, former Leinster man Jimmy Gopperth and Australian Kurtley Beale. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Muscle has a memory and way back in October I was in the Sportsground for the Toulouse Connacht match and wondered were Toulouse the heavyweights of E(...)

 Jack Conan  missed last weekend’s 22-21 win over Cardiff with a tight calf. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Jack Conan is fit to start at number eight for Leinster in Saturday’s Champions Cup quarter-final against Wasps at the Aviva Stadium. Conan missed la(...)

 Jimmy Gopperth: “We just have to be mentally on because it is going to be a knockout game of international standard.” Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

A New Zealander lured north to replace Jonny Wilkinson and later Johnny Sexton deserves more respect than the moniker of mere mercenary. Safely ensc(...)

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