John Hayes

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 Oli Jager lands awkwardly during  Canterbury’s Mitre 10 Cup match against Southland at Orangetheory stadium  in Christchurch in August 2019. Photograph: Martin Hunter/Getty Images

False narrative: Oliver Jager was lured away from the land of his birth to pursue the All Blacks dream. In the summer of 2013, a 17-year-old realised(...)

Ronan O’Gara scores a try in the 2000 Heineken Cup semi-final. Photograph: Inpho

On a glorious sunny day in Bordeaux on May 6th 2000, it was 20 years ago this week, the Red Army was born. It was also the day that Munster truly anno(...)

Leinster’s Isa Nacewa gets past Ronan O’Gara Doug Howlett and Keith Earls of Munster during the 2009 Heineken Cup semi-final at Croke Park. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

In the absence of all live sport, supporters of whatever hue have had no choice but to selectively choose from television’s various trips down memory (...)

Tadhg Furlong in action against Scotland during the Six Nations game against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium on February 1st. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

For players and coaches who have young families, being in lockdown has its pluses. And likewise for those from a farming background. Not a bad time at(...)

Ronan O’Gara kicks the winning drop goal in Munster’s win over Northampton in the Heineken Cup   at Thomond Park in November 2011. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty Images

Phase 1 Tomás O’Leary sets the tone. Running from the back of the scrum, the Munster scrumhalf is stopped 10 metres from the visitors’ 22. The ball i(...)

Six Nations 19/3/2000 France vs IrelandBrian O'Driscoll is surrounded by teamates�INPHO/Billy Stickland

There’s not much to celebrate these days but March 19th 2020 marks the 20th anniversary of one of the most seismic and memorable days in the history o(...)

Ireland captain Johnny Sexton has been the target of some baleful diatribes on social media. Photograph:  James Crombie/Inpho

The 2002 Six Nations is increasingly providing uncomfortable pointers toward the 2020 version, although it is to be fervently hoped things don’t pan o(...)

Ireland’s Andy Farrell at   training in Tokyo during the Rugby World Cup. His  first match as Ireland’s head coach is a Six Nations Championship game against Scotland at the Aviva stadium on  February, 1st. Photograph:  Billy Stickland/Inpho

Andy Farrell’s 45-man squad, his first as the new Ireland coach in succeeding Joe Schmidt, offers a selection of the old and the new, many borrowed fr(...)

Ronan Kelleher scores his second try for Leinster  against Connacht at the Sportsgraound. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Ins and Outs Every cloud has a silver lining, right? That would be the try scoring, offloading Ronan Kelleher at the Sportsground last Friday night.(...)

Leinster’s  Tadhg Furlong reacts as he scores the first try during the Champions Cup final  between Leinster and Saracens at St James’ Park  in Newcastle. Photograph:   Glyn Kirk/AFP/Getty Images

Summertime, and the sporting seasons are overlapping. Being a proud Wexford man, Tadhg Furlong went along to Parnell Park with a few Leinster teammate(...)

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