Irelands RWC15 Report Card: Part Six – The Back Three

Tommy Bowe: Probably one of, if not the most, popular players on the team, and one of the most accomplished. Beside being the second highest test try-scorer in the history of Irish rugby – behind only Brian O’Driscoll – Bowe is also a five test Lion, a double IRUPA Player of the Year [2008 and 2010] and a former Six Nations Player of the tournament [2010].

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Transferring Talent

Eoin O'Malley has had a very promising career cut short mid-stride. With Brian O'Driscoll definitively in his last season and held back due to his summer exertions with the Lions, it's a bad blow to the team as well.

Eoin O’Malley has had a very promising career cut short mid-stride. Serious injury is an ever-present threat in rugby, but it’s impossible to dwell on it and perform at your optimum. O’Malley’s early retirement means that not one of the Leinster players born in 1988 who represented Ireland at U20 level in 2008 – and there were ten of them – are currently contracted to the club.

The argument was made to The Mole recently that Clermont have missed their chance to win the Heineken Cup, with a number of their most prominent players having passed their prime.  Continue reading

Match Reaction: Leinster 19 – 15 Glasgow

Vintage Heaslip: Jamie Heaslip backs himself and goes around the outside of the Glasgow defense for a fifty yard break. The Leinster No8 still hasn’t lost a match as captain of his province.

Leinster battled out a teak tough eighty minutes against a gritty Glasgow side to seal a place in their third successive Magner’s League/Pro12 Grand Final.  Continue reading

Leinster’s New Contracts

Leinster announced a huge number of contract extensions together, neatly defusing inspection of new recruits (Denton and Bent) and camouflaging some other calls which might have got more attention in the media were they announced piecemeal.

In the wake of their Heineken Cup semi-final win in Bordeaux against Clermont Auvergne, Leinster have released a statement detailing a whole raft of contract renewals and a few new signings. Continue reading

Match Reaction: Saxons 23 – 17 Wolfhounds

Somebody sort this lad out with a Cotton Traders baggy jersey from the 1990s.

At one stage in this ‘A’ international the Saxons led the Wolfhounds 17-5, despite never having any real dominance. Ireland fought their way back to a more respectable – not to mention reflective – score with well-taken tries from Tomás O’Leary and Simon Zebo, but they had leaked too many soft points to take home the win … in a totally meaningless match. Continue reading