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Friday 24 March 2023 Dublin: 8°C


All time
# Measure of the Man
Top two inches: How Billy Holland set out on his path into Munster's record books
There are plenty of locks bigger than Billy Holland about, but few have left such a footprint on rugby in Munster.
# Boxing
Carl Frampton retires after Herring stops him in six
The Jackal had set out hoping to become a three-weight world champion in Dubai.
# red roses
England and France overpower opposition on Six Nations opening day
Jess Breach scored the pick England’s eight tries against Scotland,while Caroline Boujard ran in a hat-trick for France against Wales.
Planning a trip to the US? Here’s 5 things to consider
We’ve teamed up with An Post to help you plan your trip to the US.
Munster v Toulouse, Champions Cup last 16
We went minute-by-minute as Munster took on another European giant.
# hard road
12 years on from Sixways success Connacht still hampered by English issue
Andy Friend’s side take on Leicester Tigers in Welford Road this weekend, but wins on English soil are rare indeed for the Westerners.
# pedigree
'Everyone has Leinster on that pedestal': Beirne bullish about Munster's chances
Tadhg Beirne helped scupper Munster’s last attempt to win a final, but he is a key man in a Munster side that have come a long way since.
# big game player
Quinlan delights as Conor Murray returns to Lions form
‘He’s a big scrum-half who makes a lot of tackles.’
# Against the odds
Carbery on track as Van Graan embraces the pressure of final showdown with Leinster
The Munster head coach has tasted success just once against Leinster, but ha confidence that his side can upset the odds on Saturday at the RDS.
# Final Countdown
Munster striving to have 'immaculate' basics against Leinster side with 'no weakness'
Johann van Graan is banking on Munster’ s fundamentals giving them an edge in Saturday’s Pro14 final.
# now or never
Munster must secure a trophy to 'to turn the page on our era' -- Quinlan
It’s coming up on 10 years since Munster claimed silverware, beating Leinster would be a fine way of ending comparisons with the golden age.
# free agent
Former Ireland U19 international Cotter released by Ipswich Town
The former Limerick FC man made just four appearances for the League One outfit
# pro14
Niall Murray hoping to tip the balance for Connacht against Scarlets
The young lock has quickly filled out into a force in the Connacht engine room.
# madness to method
Sexton's sanity proven as Ireland trounce England
‘I don’t think you guys listened to us,’ said Jonathan Sexton after Ireland delivered the best performance of the Andy Farrell era.
# hard and fair
'That would be unjust to the jersey': No need for red redemption from O'Mahony
The Munster back row is set to return after serving his suspension for a red card against Wales.
# family first
Stander gives currency to 'values' as he rides off into the sunset
The Munster and Ireland star is putting his family first by stepping away from rugby.
# legacy
'From the day he arrived he did his best to buy in to our culture, now he's creating culture'
Peter O’Mahony is hoping to create a few special memories before CJ Stander bids farewell to Munster.
# quarter glass of milk
'There’s a hope in me that nobody else will have to go through this'
‘The reality is I know people are going through this every day.’
# opportunity knocks
Dead rubber can offer a little bounce for Connacht
It’s a Connacht side with debuts and full debuts to celebrate.
# Big Dan
Set-piece focus has Sheehan standing out among front row prospects
The 22-year-old is a more imposing figure than the average hooker.
# back five
O'Connell marvels at modern locks Baird and Beirne
‘The place for a workhorse second row that hits rucks all day, I don’t know how long more there is in the game for him.’
# up for grabs
Lions at the back of Sexton's mind as he gears up for Scotland
‘We want to get as many Irish people on that trip as possible.’
# 6 Nations
Ireland's line-out 'in a good place now' led by Ryan and O'Connell
The young pack leader was sorely missed in defeats to Wales and France, but is keen to put O’Connell’s ‘intricacies’ to work against Scotland.
# opportunity knocks
Tigers the focus for Connacht as they prepare to rotate in Pro14
Andy Friend and Denis Buckley have their eye on European silverware.
'People probably don’t appreciate what he offers, but I think that’s changing'
Stuart Lancaster is thrilled to see Jamison Gibson-Park rise to the big stage.
# 6 Nations
'We have to be hard to beat, we can’t give things away and give teams a leg up'
Paul O’Connell admits it has been a challenge to hold back some detail from Ireland players.
# hammer down
Baloucoune hoping to catch up with Sevens pace-setters after injury nightmare
The Ulster flyer was hamstrung as Hugo Keenan and Shane Daly made their way onto the international stage last year.
# call of the wild
Off the beaten track: Adventure sport operators primed for a crucial summer
There is cause for optimism in Ireland’s adventure tourism sector as ‘the crisis before the current crisis’ takes a tentative step towards reform.
# in the hunt
'If we win this weekend, 100% it’s possible': O'Halloran intent on chasing down Munster
The fullback knows Connacht must whittle Munster’s lead by at least four points tomorrow.
# roll deep
Connacht ready to go toe-to-toe with Munster maul
The southern province profited from the set-piece in January, but Connacht are wary of getting stuck in the same trap.
# Bouncing Back
'A shock to the system': Baloucoune relieved to see action after injury nightmare
The 23-year-old had to wait a year between Ulster appearances due to a hamstring avulsion last summer.
# worth the wait
'I don't want to sit back and be happy with being third choice': Casey ready for more Test rugby
The 21-year-old scrum-half was made to wait over 140 minutes as a replacement before winning his first cap.
# steady as she goes
Control key as Connacht bring big guns to Benetton
The western province are riding high in Conference B and ought to have plenty in reserve in Treviso.
# jc
Caution and excitement valid as Carbery prepares to end injury nightmare
The brilliant playmaker could be last piece of the jigsaw needed by Munster.
# boomer
Munster prop O'Connor pushing his way back into big-game action
The loosehead admits it took time to adapt to the game again after a year sidelined with a terrible knee injury.
Dowling delighted to have back issue behind him as he settles in with Connacht
The second row endured a long wait and rehab before he got to pull on the green jersey this month.
# Carb Loading
'He really looked good': Carbery making strides towards Munster return
The Ireland playmaker has endured a torrid run of injuries, but is finally off Munster’s injured list.
# Picture perfect
Ireland players pragmatic as they chase the space in attack
‘The hard part in international rugby is creating the chances and we’ve done that.’
# Kicking On
Sexton hints that 2023 World Cup may be beyond him
‘I’m just going to focus on this campaign and, if I’m around next year, just focus on that and try and make the most of whatever is left.’
# catalyst
Connacht generating alternative to Aki's innate energy
The centre is an irreplaceable personality in any team, but Connacht have worked at how they operate in his absence.
'I belong to this team': Pauw signs contract extension to guide Ireland into World Cup qualifiers
The Dutch coach lamented missing out on Euro 2022, but is heartened by a quickly improving side.