Sport Harlequins and Leicester Tigers players leave the Twickenham Stoop pitch after the game is stopped on 'health and safety grounds'

Play was stopped on 'health and safety grounds' after Paul Sackey, Maurie Fa'asavalu and Tom Guest

Matt Parker, far right, heads a 16-man team charged with preparing England for the World Cup next year

Six Nations Championship: ‘Mr Marginal Gains’ gears up England’s game

There are plenty of people out there who look at the way the All Blacks are playing – not to mention the way the Springboks have added a sprinkling of panache to their power game – and reach the conclusion that England cannot possibly win their home World Cup next year without a miracle.

Richard Cockerill served a nine-match ban earlier this season

Richard Cockerill escapes punishment over Sale Sharks ‘cheat’ comments

Richard Cockerill will not face disciplinary action over his post-match comments made following last Saturday’s Premiership game between Leicester and Sale Sharks.

George Robson of Harlequins - the Quins were defeated last week at Bath

Stakes are high as George Robson’s Harlequins go big game hunting

Harlequins lock George Robson insists the club’s domestic and European campaigns hinge on the “Big Game Six” against Exeter at Twickenham today.

MAY
Bayern, best in Europe
Wembley Stadium played host to the all-German Champions League Final where Bayern Munich righted the wrongs of the previous year's competition by beating Borussia Dortmund 2-1 to claim their fifth title. Arjen Robben's late winner banished the memories of losing two finals in three years, including defeat to Chelsea in their home ground in the 2012 final. The win completed an incredible year for Bayern who also won all of their domestic competitions and led to people proclaiming them as the world's best team.

The 100 greatest sporting moments of 2013 - 21-40

We look back at 12 months of unforgettable action

Harlequins’ Charlie Walker breaks a tackle to score a try against Racing Metro

Heineken Cup round-up: 'Harlequins can complete great fightback,' says Director of Rugby Connor O'Shea

Conor O’Shea believes Harlequins can clinch a remarkable comeback and qualify for the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup after earning their second successive victory over big-spending Racing Metro.

The Christmas party season is extending into January

Businesses choose to come late to the (Christmas) party

December is typically when staff enjoy a cocktail of office Christmas parties, festive team lunches and client drinks, followed in the New Year by vows of abstinence and resolutions to hit the gym. The calorie counting may have to be delayed this year, however, due to a rise in companies holding their annual celebrations in January.

Paul Vaughan, the man in charge of England 2015, knows the Rugby World Cup will soon be here again

Rugby World Cup 2015: Organisers urged to reschedule late kick-offs

England are scheduled to play all four of their pool matches at 8pm

Northampton argue they have contravened no rules by releasing George North to face Australia

Northampton face fine after releasing George North for Wales duty

He will play in Saturday’s Test match against Australia, which falls outside the international window

Rugby World Cup 2015: Progressive tickets but some nightmarish late kick-off times

Some tickets for the major pool games, including those featuring England, will set you back 41 times the current living wage rate. How on earth will Prince Harry afford it?

2015 Rugby World Cup schedule and ticket prices
Martin Johnson lifts the Webb Ellis Cup in 2003

Rugby World Cup 2015 tickets, venues, fixtures: Prices start low but will soar at the sharp end

England 2015 have announced the full schedule and ticket pricing for the showcase tournament which will see the hosts play away from Twickenham for the first time since 2009

Gloucester sign Sila Puafisi to boost forward drive

Rugby Union Correspondent

PRL chief Mark McCafferty is planning for the start of the Rugby Champions Cup next season

Rugby clubs set for collision course over European competitions

The last lingering hopes of a speedy solution to the argument over the future of European rugby evaporated when five of the six major governing bodies threw their weight behind the existing Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup competitions. The French, Irish, Italian, Scottish and Welsh unions effectively pledged to stand against the new Rugby Champions Club being organised by the leading clubs in England and France.

A proud yet dejected Chris Robshaw leas the England side off the pitch

England 22 New Zealand 30: 'Proud' Chris Robshaw calls for his side to be as clinical as the All Blacks if they want to taste victory

Sporting a badly swollen eye, Robshaw admitted that New Zealand set the benchmark for every other team after narrow defeat

A for effort: Geoff Parling looks like he’s given his all at the final whistle but England proved a tougher test than the All Blacks had anticipated

England v New Zealand: Red rose defeated by All Blacks but on the right road for 2015

England coach Stuart Lancaster hails young team's progress towards next World Cup

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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform