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Ozer McMahon

Freelance sports journalist with a particular penchant for rugby. Keen follower of matters in both hemispheres, but biggest focus remains on Irish rugby. Twitter handle is @OzerMcmahon
PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 13: Joe Schmidt the head coach of Ireland looks on prior to kickoff during the RBS Six Nations match between France and Ireland at the Stade de France on February 13, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Is Joe Schmidt To Blame For Ireland’s Demise?

“Oh what became of the likely lads? Oh what became of the dreams we had?” Pete Doherty may not have penned those lyrics in 2004 with reference to this particular Irish rugby team in mind, yet it’s impossible not to consider them as a prophetic words for the current struggles of a side held in such high regard in recent seasons. …

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Irish Rugby XV Of The Weekend

As the curtain closes on the pool stages of the European Cup, it makes for grim reading for the Irish provinces. Despite an improved series of results, which saw them win four of the six concluding fixtures, there is no Irish side in the quarter finals of Europe’s premier tournament for the first time in 18 seasons. Ulster entered the …

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A Team Of Six Nations Rookies Hoping To Make An Impact In 2016

Every year the Six Nations rolls around, and every year it elicits excitement from the supporters of rugby’s most tribal competition. The fare may be stagnant from time to time, but more often than not, supporters reflect on the competition fondly once it’s drawn to a conclusion. Following the disappointing World Cup experienced by the northern hemisphere countries, change is …

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Munster Back Ruled Out For 12 Weeks

In a week that started so well for Munster with the redemptive victory over Stade Francais, the province has been hit with the news their Kiwi out half, cum centre, Tyler Bleyendaal is to miss the next 12 weeks of action. The 25-year-old is suffering from a quadriceps tendon injury, which, after specialist consultation, it’s been decided an extended period on …

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Which All Blacks Player Can Be The Next Big Thing?

After an unprecedented run of success, Father Time has finally caught up with the All Blacks. After a decade which has seen New Zealand hoover up Tri Nations crowns, claim an inaugural Rugby Championship title and win back to back World Cups, 6 of the players central to that success have exited the international arena. As always the All Blacks …

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Assessing The Irish Provinces’ Overseas Players

Nobody within the Irish game is under any illusions as to the difficulty the provinces face in trying to reassert themselves amongst the game’s elite. Having pilfered five European crowns in seven years, Munster and Leinster now lag miles behind the continent’s superpowers. The French game has been awash with money for the past number of seasons, while the English …

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Irish Team Of The Weekend

It was a rare weekend of Irish success in the European Cup, with two of the three provinces winning on the same weekend for the first time this term. Munster and Ulster were largely at full strength, while Leinster took the chance to blood some of their young prospects in Europe for the first time. With all three provinces playing back-to-back …

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Irish Rugby: Four Talking Points From The Weekend’s Action

Crisis? What Crisis? For everyone administering the last rights to Irish rugby, all three provinces finally landed body blows as the European Cup pool stages approach their conclusion. Ulster pushed Saracens hard in the home of the English champions, before succumbing to an expected defeat but their chances of progression are still very much in their own hands as they …

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BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - NOVEMBER 20: Paddy Jackson (L) of Ulster clears his lines during the European Champions Cup Pool 1 rugby game at Kingspan Stadium on November 20, 2015 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

Five Irish Players Looking To Impress This Weekend

As we enter the penultimate weekend of European Cup pool stage action, competitive Irish interest is on the wane. As a result of bringing knives to their previous gunfights, Munster and Leinster have nothing but pride to play for this weekend – or next – having garnered a paltry return of one victory from eight games between them. Munster are …

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The Race For England’s Captaincy: Who Are The Frontrunners?

As a new era for English rugby begins all the relevant questions are nearly answered. Eddie Jones has revamped his backroom team, he has brought in the coaches he feels will elicit the best reaction from a youthful and exuberant looking playing squad. Jones has also reinvigorated the squad by including a host of new names and removing a sizable …

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Assessing England’s Uncapped Brigade

As Eddie Jones prepares to pen the next chapter in English rugby history books, he does so lumbered with a number of the same characters from the previous instalments. With his hands bound by Elite Player Squad regulations, the Australian – the first foreign head coach appointed by the RFU – is permitted to make only ten changes to the …

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Where To Now For Hapless Munster?

And with the force of one formidable French foot, Munster’s last dying embers of hopes for progression to the knock out stages of the European Champions Cup were extinguished emphatically in Paris on Saturday evening. Munster have lost many games in France over the years, but they have never succumbed in the manner they did this time around, falling off tackles and …

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Munster vs Stade Francais: Three Key Battles

January blues are a common occurrence. The weather is poor, the come down from Christmas is catastrophic and the next pay cheque seems an eternity away. For Munster fans, they could always count on their rugby team lifting the mood, by producing their traditional against-the-odds performances to haul themselves into the latter stages of the European Cup. It was one …

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Ireland’s Top 30 Players From 2015

As we turn the calendar to 2016, it’s all about fresh starts, fresh beginnings and achieving new goals. Joe Schmidt has named a 48-man squad for the first get together of the New Year. Ireland’s 2016 season doesn’t commence until February 7 but this 24 hour minicamp allows the national coaching team to offer the players fresh insights, and areas to …

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Five Uncapped Players To Watch Out For In 2016

Everyone dreams of being the next big thing. The man who takes the world by storm and shoots from the shadows into the limelight. In 2015, a number of stellar tyros, including Waisake Naholo and Jessie Kriel made the step up from Super Rugby supremoes to international level. The undoubted international newcomer of the year, however, was Hurricanes star Nehe …

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Irish Rugby: Provincial Power Rankings

As the festive season approaches, and the double Christmas derbies loom large on the horizon, we’re offered the perfect chance to take stock of the first half of the season. There has been a wide range of ups and downs, and plenty in between, to keep provincial supporters entertained and enraged thus far this term. As such, here are the …

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