Sport Richardt Strauss could return to the Ireland squad for the Six Nations following his rapid recovery from heart surgery

Schmidt coached Strauss at Leinster and believes that his return is a bonus for Ireland ahead of the Six Nations campaign

Wright in line to make Test debut

Flower hints at all-rounder batting at No 7 but wants Anderson to prove his fitness

Fact: players are too big for own good

Our unique comparison of 1971 and 2009 Lions tours reveals rugby is now a collision sport for muscular hulks, while exclusive stats show doctor's plea for change is well founded

Brian Ashton: A confident fly-half can bring tightest game to life

Tackling the issues

Jacob Zuma: Aids is killing our people but working together we can fight back

We need extraordinary measures to reverse the trends we are seeing in the health profile of our people. We know that the situation is serious. We have seen the statistics. We know that the average life expectancy of South Africans has been falling, and that South Africans are dying at a young age. We have seen the child-headed and granny-headed households, and have witnessed the pain and displacement of orphans and vulnerable children.

Brian Ashton: It is the money men who are suffocating our game

Tackling the issues

Will the lights go out on South Africa's World Cup?

A race row at the top of the national power company has left it without a leader

Chris Hewett: Ban on 'gang-tackling' would curb rising casualties

Increasingly concerned by the ever rising number of injuries affecting top-flight professional players – of the 32-man England squad selected by Martin Johnson in July, only 20 were still standing this time last week – Twickenham officials are eagerly awaiting the outcome of the International Rugby Board's latest medical conference, which begins in nine days' time. In particular, they want to see whether the experts can come up with workable methods of depowering the tackle and making life just a little safer at the ruck.

Semenya: The mystery grows

The South African athlete did take a gender test before the World Championships, and the results alarmed the team doctor

What's the score on World Cup travel?

England are through to the finals in South Africa, but the biggest challenge fans will face is getting there

O'Connell drinks in the Lions' salvation

South Africa 9 British & Irish Lions 28

De Villiers' Boks are as clueless as their coach

After an undignified week the world champions descended into disarray

Lions thump Springboks to avoid series whitewash

South Africa 9 British and Irish Lions 28

Matthew Rees: 'The Boks were under pressure – we had them'

Lions hooker Matthew Rees had the game of his life in the last Test. He tells Chris Hewett about eye-gouging, those uncontested scrums and why victory today will ease the pain from Pretoria

Eddie Jones: Boks have peaked – the only way is down

Calling the shots
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Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

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From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
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Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
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Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
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Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
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Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

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Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
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The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
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Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
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The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there