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Leinster Coach: Pre-Season Defeats Are Insignificant

Leinster Rugby Head Coach Matt O’Connor cast aside “insignificant” pre-season defeats as Ulster defeated the reigning Pro12 Champions 10-7 in Tallaght. In a game which saw last year’s top Ulster Bank League try scorer, Clontarf’s Michael McGrath, Old Belvedere’s Steve Crosbie and Ireland U20s star Cian Kelleher all given increased game time, O’Connor heaped praise on a number of their …

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Focus Friday – Has Ian Madigan Missed His Shot?

This week’s Focus Friday discusses the return of Jonathan Sexton and the implications it could have for Leinster’s Ian Madigan. As we approach the new season, we’ve had one interesting development over the last week – the return of Jonathan Sexton. Whilst we are all captured in the excitement of the prospect of Sexton completing a sensational u-turn, there’s one man …

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Rugby: Who’s Hot & Who’s Not?

New Zealand blasted their critics with a 51-20 destruction of Australia, while the South African scrum was pitiful to say the least. Here’s Matt Cassidy with this week’s ‘Who’s Hot and Who’s Not?’. Who’s Hot? New Zealand 51 points accumulated, six tries scored and the Bledisloe cup secured for another year, it was All Black magic in Auckland at the …

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Jonny Sexton To Return To Leinster

There has been a huge boost to the domestic game in Ireland on this Monday morning, with the news that Racing Metro outhalf Jonny Sexton will be returning to Leinster at the end of the upcoming season. News of Sexton’s return was reported in the Irish Independenton Monday following weeks of speculation about whether the Ireland international would return to ‘D4TRESS’. The deal …

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Welsh Rugby In Disarray

Two weeks out from the start of the Guinness Pro12 League and the Welsh Rugby Union and clubs are nowhere closer to a deal.  Jack McCann details the saga that could potentially have disastrous consequences for the Welsh national team going forward. Since Warren Gatland became the head coach of Wales back in 2007, the team have gone on to …

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Provincial Preview: Munster Rugby

With the new Anthony Foley era about to get underway Matt Cassidy previews Munster’s upcoming season in Europe and the Pro 12.  Overview The Southern province heads into the new campaign with a sense of the unknown. Anthony Foley steps into the breach after Rob Penney decided to up sticks and move to the Land of The Rising Sun. Experienced …

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Rugby: European Champions Cup Preview: Pool 3

The era of the Heineken Cup is over and the rugby world is now readying itself for the inaugural European Rugby Champions Cup. Our preview continues with a look at Pool 3. Pool 3 Along with Pool 1, this is the blockbuster pool. The undisputed European champions, Toulon, with their riches take on ever consistent Leicester Tigers, along with the unlucky Ulstermen and …

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Fifty Shades of Grey and Misogyny in Sport

“As I bent over with a blonde’s hand slipping around the top of my thigh, I pondered how there are worse ways to burn calories on a sleepy Thursday evening.” Sounds more like the start of ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ than a newspaper article.  This was the introduction to an article written by Niamh Horan, a journalist for the Sunday …

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Rugby: Who’s Hot & Who’s Not

Matt Cassidy is here with his usual roundup of the week’s rugby action. It was a week to remember for English rugby, while New Zealand will be scratching their heads as they let another record slip. Who’s Hot England Women The ‘English Roses’ finally got their hands on the World Cup trophy on Sunday evening in Paris when they defeated …

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Rugby – European Champions Cup Preview: Pool 2

As our preview of next season’s European Rugby Champions Cup continues, Jonathan Abbott previews pool 2, which includes three-time European Champions Leinster. The Irish province will do battle with Castres, and London’s duo of Harlequins and play-off winners Wasps. _____ Leinster (4/7) Key Player: Sean O’Brien Player to Watch: Zane Kirchner ( Debut year last year, but scintillating in the Pro12 final against …

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Rugby – European Champions Cup Preview: Pool 1

The Heineken Cup is gone, and has been replaced with the European Champions Cup. In the first of a multi-part series, Jonathan Abbott previews European rugby’s new tournament,  focusing on Pool 1. The era of the Heineken Cup is over. Whatever province you are from you will have endured the highs of the Jonathan Sexton inspired second-half comeback to defeat …

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Provincial Preview: Ulster Rugby

This week’s Provincial Preview sees Ulster Rugby come under the spotlight, as the province looks to put last year’s roller-coaster campaign behind them. Overview Summertime in Belfast is never dull. The usual stories and arguments over contentious parades, flags and violence pepper the media outlets leaving very little room for any other news. However, this off season, Ulster Rugby has done its …

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Provincial Preview: Connacht Rugby

In the first of his province previews, Matt Casssidy looks at how Connacht have been shaping up in the off season. “Rugby has many problems, but the gravest is undoubtedly that of the persistence of summer.” As the long, hot summer draws to a close, players, coaches and supporters of the four provinces will be gearing themselves up for another …

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Rugby: Who’s Hot & Who’s Not

Matt Cassidy is back with this week’s edition of Who’s Hot and Who’s Not. It was a historic week for the Waratahs, while Richie McCaw won’t want to remember the Super Final.  Who’s Hot NSW Waratahs It was third time lucky for the ‘Tahs who finally got their hands on the Super Rugby trophy. The Sydney siders, who finished top …

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Keeping Up With The Kearneys

Geraldine Kieran reports from a special questions and answers event hosted by Brent Pope in Dundalk RFC where the RTE rugby pundit spoke to Leinster and Ireland rugby internationals and brothers, Rob and Dave Kearney. ‘Keeping Up With The Kearneys!’ It may be a very tongue and cheek title but keeping up with the Kearneys is most certainly a big challenge. Over …

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