Sport Jacques Burger has, due to injury, played only 10 Heineken Cup games for Saracens

Fiery flanker reveals how Sarries’ extravagant team-bonding trips will help them give their all at Ravenhill in the Heineken Cup on Saturday – and how it just might pay off

Ireland prop Cian Healy has been ruled out for eight weeks after undergoing ankle surgery

Leinster and Ireland prop Cian Healy a doubt for Six Nations opener after undergoing ankle surgery

The British and Irish Lions loosehead will miss Leinster's Heineken Cup run-in and could also miss the start of the Six Nations after being ruled out for eight weeks

RFU chief executive Ian Ritchie alongside England head coach Stuart Lancaster

Rugby Football Union claims the sport has not been affected by spot-fixing but remains determined in vigilance against corruption

The issue is being raised in all sports following the match-fixing investigations that has rocked English football in recent weeks

The Sport Matrix: Monday 9 December 2013

Deulofeu pegs back Arsenal as Fulham stop the rot

Pat Lam led Connacht to one of the best wins in the province’s history

Heineken Cup round-up: Pat Lam hails Connacht’s shock win at Toulouse

Connacht coach Pat Lam was delighted at the way his side held their nerve on Sunday to pull off one of the biggest wins in the history of the Irish provincial side and put them back in the hunt for a Heineken Cup quarter-final place.

Jamie Gibson goes over from close range for Leicester against Montpellier on Sunday

Leicester 41 Montpellier 32: Miles Benjamin delighted to accept French surrender

The English clubs may be turning their backs on the most compelling annual tournament in the union game but at least they are showing the good grace to wait until the end of the season. The French appear to be engaged in a mass skedaddle with two thirds of the campaign still to run. Racing Métro, Perpignan, Toulouse... between them, three of the biggest teams in the country have just made a mockery of the idea that they are still remotely interested in European competition.

Wing Martyn Thomas scored two tries in Gloucester’s victory in the Scottish capital

Edinburgh 12 Gloucester 23: Gloucester’s call to arms gets Martyn Thomas firing

In the wake of Gloucester’s most recent reverse on the domestic front, their fifth in a row, Nigel Davies turned to the words of Winston Churchill for inspiration. “When you’re going through hell, keep going,” the Kingsholm commander urged his weary troops, as if all 15 of them were preparing to pad up and face the demonic Dick Dastardly of the Antipodes, Mitchell Johnson.

Life of Brian: Brian O’Driscoll breaks away for a try that he clearly enjoyed

Northampton 7 Leinster 40 match report: Leinster give lesson in the arts of speed and handling

Northampton overwhelmed from the start by a brand of the game they rarely experience

Heineken Cup round-up: Chris Ashton double tops Saracens romp

Saracens put the Heineken Cup quarter-finals in view by collecting a bonus point and top spot in Pool Three with a five-try victory away to Zebre in Pool Three. Chris Ashton scored two of them in the second half of the 39-10 triumph after Sarries led 25-0 at half-time courtesy of tries from George Kruis, Ernst Joubert and Chris Wyles.

Harlequins fly-half Nick Evans scored 17 points in the Heineken Cup win over Racing Metro

Racing Metro 8 Harlequins 32 match report: Quins make a Racing start in quest for a good Cup run

Quarter-final place now in sight as Londoners take apart French in four-try demolition

Clermont Auvergne wing Napolioni Nalaga celebrates one of his two tries against the Scarlets

Clermont Auvergne 32 Llanelli Scarlets 11 match report: Napolioni Nalaga double sinks Welsh club in dominant second-half performance

Scarlets held Clermont to a half-time 6-3 deficit but Heineken Cup favourites stretched their unbeaten home record to 68 matches

Toulon fly-half Jonny Wilkinson let 11 points slip through his goal kicking inaccuracy

Exeter 9 Toulon 14 match report: Henry Slade sparkles but Jonny Wilkinson kicks Chiefs into touch

Wilkinson let 11 points slip away through missed kicks but valiant Chiefs are seen off thanks to late drop goal

Jonny Wilkinson's Toulon travel to take on Exeter

Heineken Cup: Toulon test for Baxter’s boys as Harlequins battle to stay alive

If Morecambe and Wise had been blessed with Premier Rugby’s sledgehammer sense of timing, the celebrated Andre Previn sketch would have been about as side-splittingly funny as a David Cameron one-liner.

The Sport Matrix: Friday 6 December 2013

Hodgson open to late change of World Cup base

English clubs to deliver uncompromising European message

The true gravity of the crisis over the future of European club rugby is likely to be laid bare on Thursday when the owners and chairmen of England’s leading professional teams gather in London to map out their vision of the future.

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