Ireland

Ireland end long wait in Australia

Joe Schmidt's men were beaten 18-9 in last weekend's opening clash but, with Johnny Sexton back in the side as one of eight changes, Ireland controlled proceedings for long spells at AAMI Park.

The Wallabies outscored their visitors by three tries to two but it was the boot of Sexton that proved the difference as the hosts' discipline let them down - the Irish number 10 kicked 16 points to put Ireland out of reach.

Australia took an early lead when Kurtley Beale found a gap to touch down under the posts inside two minutes.

Timu, Paenga-Amosa handed Test debuts

The Reds pair have been named at hooker and No. 8, respectively, with Pete Samu also set to make his debut from the bench.

Timu's inclusion pushes David Pocock to blindside flanker, with captain Michael Hooper to start at openside.

Izack Rodda will pack down alongside Adam Coleman in the second row, with Sekope Kepu earning the nod over Taniela Tupou at tighthead prop.

Ireland's Payne forced to retire

The 32-year-old was hurt in a tour match against the Chiefs on June 20 and has been struggling with headache-related problems ever since.

Consequently, Payne – who earned 20 Ireland caps – will end his playing career and take up a role as defence coach with Ulster, the Pro14 side have confirmed.

"It's been a good ride but unfortunately every good thing has to come to an end," he told Ulster's official website.

"Playing rugby has taken me to places I never thought I'd see and allowed me to meet people I never thought I'd meet. 

Ireland claim historic grand slam

The Irish made light of sleet and biting wind and an England team desperate to avoid a third successive defeat as they deservedly led 21-5 at halftime with tries by Garry Ringrose, CJ Stander and the prolific Jacob Stockdale.

England, unbeaten at home in the Six Nations since 2012, managed tries by Elliot Daly in each half, but were unable to gain a foothold in the face of ferocious Irish defence.

Zimbabwe hammer sorry Ireland in ICC World Cup qualifiers

SCORECARD | AS IT HAPPENED

Sikandar Raza struck an unbeaten 69 off 83 balls to bail Zimbabwe out of trouble after they hd slipped to 139-7 batting first - his half-century helping the Harare hosts to a competitive score of 211-9.

Ireland rise to number two in rugby rankings

Ireland's win over Scotland at the weekend and England's loss to France, means the two teams swap position on the rankings table.

It's the first time Ireland have been number two since August 2015.

Ireland are now on 87.85 points - over six behind the world's number one team New Zealand, and 0.35 in front of England, who they face at Twickenham this weekend as they go in pursuit of only their third Grand Slam.

Australia are at four followed by South Africa, Scotland and Wales.

Six Nations: Ireland win 2018 title

Ireland's earlier four-try, 28-8 win over Scotland had left England needing a bonus-point victory in Paris to keep their title hopes alive.

It is Ireland's third title in five years under Joe Schmidt but Johnny Sexton said celebrations were "muted".

They will win the Grand Slam if they beat England next Saturday.

"It's a strange feeling to win the championship with a game to go," said Irish fly-half Sexton.

Henshaw ruled out of Six Nations

Henshaw appeared to dislocate his shoulder as he scored his second try of the comfortable win in Dublin, the Leinster back leaving the field with his injured right arm in a sling.

Coach Joe Schmidt had hoped there would be good news about the centre, but scans on Monday confirmed Henshaw would need an operation.

The 24-year-old has already had surgery to correct the problem but that means he will play no further part in the tournament.

Ireland put record score on Boks

Allister Coetzee's side came to Dublin having recovered from a 57-0 thrashing to New Zealand in Albany in September by pushing the world champions to within a point a month later but it was back to the drawing board at the Aviva Stadium.

"It's a tough day, it's not what any of us wanted. We've no excuses and we're going to have to rectify this, us and the management," South Africa captain Eben Etzebeth told a news conference.

Ireland: Fantastic experience to play in PNG

“I’d recommend it to anyone who plays rugby league around the world. If you get the chance to come and play here, take it with two hands because the people here are absolutely magnificent.”

On the game, Finn said the win was there for the taking.

“We didn’t execute particularly well with all the field possession. We had our opportunities there to win the game.

“But we got exactly what we expected. It was tough, physical. We got exactly what we knew we were coming for. In terms of the game, we were disappointed not to get the result.