Camille Lopez

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 Yoann Maestri of France dives over to score a try during the  Six Nations match against  Italy  at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Italy 0 France 29France overpowered a lacklustre Italy side in Rome in a scrappy Six Nations clash to recover from back-to-back defeats to Ireland and(...)

Wales captain Sam Warburton, with his knee iced up,  celebrates with team-mate Dan Lydiate after the victory over France at the Stade de France. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Wales are sweating on skipper Sam Warburton’s fitness after he took a blow to his knee during the 20-13 Six Nations victory over France in Paris.Wales(...)

Paul O’Connell and his team-mates had the character and fitness levels to withstand the charge of the French bench in the second half. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The Great AK was right; ‘no amount of analytical physics can open a door’ but in the end energy, team spirit and tactical nous can close many a French(...)

RBS 6 Nations Championship, Aviva Stadium, Dublin 14/2/2015Ireland vs France Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

It was all we’ve come to expect from modern-day Test rugby, brutally physical, suffocatingly tight, as taut as a wire and absorbing until the very fin(...)

Referee Wayne Barnes shows France lock Pascal Pape a yellow card after he kneed Ireland’s Jamie Heaslip in the back during the Six Nations match at the Aviva Stadium.  Photograph: Michael Steele/Getty Images

Philippe Saint-Andre has moved to defend Pascal Pape after the France lock was given a yellow card for kneeing Jamie Heaslip in the back in Ireland(...)

Ireland’s Mike Ross holds on to the shorts of French winger Teddy Thomas to make a vital tackle during the Six Nations match at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

THE BREAKDOWNIreland were outplayed here and had to send extra numbers in to try and hang on to possession. As a result France had a numerical superio(...)

Johnny Sexton delivered a man of the match performance on his long awaited return from concussion, orchestrating Ireland’s 18-11 Six Nations win over France at the Aviva Stadium. (Photograph: INPHO/Dan Sheridan)

Few games ever began with as many eyes watching one player. Johnny Sexton’s road to the Aviva, one that required an IRFU clarification about the concu(...)

Ireland outhalf Jonathan Sexton lands one of his five successful penalty kicks during the Six Nations clash against France   at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Ireland 18 France 11If winning is ultimately the only commodity that matters, it also colours the landscape panoramically. Ireland emerged victorious (...)

Jonathan Sexton enjoys very close relationship with Ireland coach Joe Schmidt. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Having the best outhalf in the northern hemisphere back in the mix would improve any team. Johnny Sexton brings presence and gravitas, and by all acc(...)

It is believed the French are considering promoting Morgan Parra at scrumhalf to start against Ireland at The Aviva Stadium on Saturday. Photograph: Getty Images.

No games seem set to define Ireland’s calendar year, and perhaps even the Joe Schmidt era, more than the meetings with the French. It was in Paris las(...)

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