Will Gatland’s decision to drop Mike Phillips, a star performer last year, come back to haunt him?

Brian Smith: Scrum battle will be crucial, but England must win the bone-on-bone collisions if they want to beat Wales

If there is one thing everyone remembers about last year’s Six Nations game between Wales and England in Cardiff, it is that England took a serious spanking.

Getting to grips with Wales’ Robert Sidoli during the 2003 World Cup quarterfinal
Richie McCaw has suffered a broken thumb that will keep him out for up to eight weeks

New Zealand captain Richie McCaw ruled out for up to eight weeks with broken thumb

McCaw suffered the blow in the Crusaders' 35-24 defeat to the Blues on Friday night

Owen Farrell kicked England’s second penalty

Six Nations 2014: Owen Farrell cleared of wrongdoing by RFU over £440 ticket sold on website

One of Farrell's allocated tickets was sold via the internet for over six times it's face value but the fly-half has been absolved of any blame

Six Nations 2014: Owen Farrell ticket sold on website for £440 leads to RFU investigation

The ticket was for the 13-10 victory over Ireland at Twickenham

David Wilson reads tweets of support on the tunnel wall at Twickenham yesterday

Lewis Moody: If England are serious about winning World Cup on home soil then game against Ireland is exactly the kind they must win convincingly

Let’s see how England cope when they are expected to put in a big performance at Twickenham

Joe Schmidt has made a major impact since taking over as Ireland head coach

Brian Smith: Ireland have shed their inferiority complex and rightfully arrive at Twickenham as favourites in Six Nations clash

There is more to this Irish team than a burning desire to put one over the big country across the water

With his aggressive and high-tempo style Rhys Webb has earned his starting place in the Wales team against France tonight

Jamie Roberts on Six Nations 2014: Dropping Mike Phillips for Rhys Webb was a massive call but Warren Gatland has got so many of those right over the years

If the coach feels a player is ready to step into the XV we all respect that immediately

RFU chairman Bill Beaumont is to meet club officials about the future of the Heineken Cup

Pro 12 collapse fears as Treviso walk out

Rugby Union finds itself facing a new crisis

Jamie Roberts (third left) roaring Jonathan Davies on his way to a dramatic try against Ireland in Dublin in 2012

Jamie Roberts: It’s usually a classic when Wales play Ireland and Saturday's clash will be no exception: a huge game, a passionate crowd...I can’t wait!

As defending champions we’ll be a target, but other teams are targets for us too

The battle between Farrell (left) and Ford could become like the Montagues and the Capulets

Brian Smith: You can’t blame Stuart Lancaster for his substitutions in the Six Nations – it is one of the hardest areas for us coaches

The Six Nations has a well-earned reputation for unpredictability and last weekend’s opening round lived up to it: Italy were a good deal more competitive against Wales than many people predicted, while the France-England rumble flew directly in the face of expectation, if we leave aside the performance of Billy Vunipola at No 8.

Owen Farrell could consider himself unlucky to end up on the losing side against France last week after excelling in his fly-half role

Lewis Moody Six Nations 2014 comment: Murrayfield will be just as intimidating as Paris but if England play the quick-ball game again they'll win back Calcutta Cup

The way England came back into the game in Paris after a poor start augurs well for Stuart Lancaster's team

England, Wales and Scotland players will not be able to combine to form a Team GB side at the Rio 2016 Olympics when rugby sevens is included

No chance of a Team GB in rugby sevens at Rio after IOC and IRB ruling states only one of England, Wales or Scotland can represent Britain

Players will not be allowed to be mixed to form a genuine Team GB side ruling out the possibility of a British and Irish Lions-style sevens side

The outstanding Billy Vunipola of England shrugs off the challenge of the French defence during the Six Nations match at the Stade de France

Lewis Moody Six Nations 2014 comment: So now England know what France do – it's not over until it's over

France showed England what it meant to never surrender

Flex Luther: Luther Burrell muscles his way through the French defence en route to his try

The Calvin Report: Stuart Lancaster's new approach carries air of authenticity

The decision by England's coach Lancaster to expose young prospects to top-class competition ends in narrow defeat but his work in formulating a new strategy ultimately will bear fruit

Sport
John Hardie has been included in Scotland's World Cup squad
Head coach makes bold call to select John Hardie instead
Sport
Warren Gatland rings the five-minute bell at the Twenty20 game between England and Australia at Sophia Gardens
Wales coach includes several inexperienced faces but still manages a pop at England
Sport
South Africa's Rugby World Cup squad are unveiled
The SARU has been taken to court over not fulfilling government's quota of naming a certain number of black players in their squad for the Rugby World Cup
Sport blogs

The Football Lawyer: The career of a Premier League footballer is similar to that of a City professional

In football, where money talks, there are few pronouncements louder than the salary of a Premier Lea...

A World Cricket XI for the ages

One man’s pursuit of cricketing nerd nirvana: an all-time XI made up of a player from each decade 19...

Wheels: Journeys in Parlympic Sport

The World Cup is all well and good, but James Moore can't wait for the arrival of new chairs for his...

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