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Thursday 9 February 2023 Dublin: 7°C

# heineken cup

Last year
2022
# Porridge
'It is a motivation, you want to get to that level and you're constantly trying'
Leinster and Ireland flanker Will Connors is not far off making his return to action.
All time
# memory lane
'I've been to World Cups but that game was just unbelievable. What a day'
Australian scrum-half Chris Whitaker was a key man as Leinster won the 2009 Heineken Cup.
# southern comfort
Quiz: How well do you remember Munster's first Heineken Cup triumph?
Declan Kidney’s side made amends for previous defeats by winning the decider on this day in 2006.
# 2000: Revisited
'Mayhem, absolute mayhem... It was just bedlam in Thomond Park that day'
Declan Kidney’s Munster broke new ground in Europe in the 1999/2000 season.
# freddie
'Without the Munster fans, we are nothing. Without them, we play for nothing'
Freddie Pucciariello won two Heineken Cups and a Magners League with the southern province.
# Back three
Addison, Stockdale, and The Cat impress as 'very happy' Ulster advance to quarters
Tom O’Toole suffered a rib injury in his side’s 22-15 win over Bath.
# Connacht
Resources stretched, but Connacht rich in creativity with Carty and Fitzgerald in side to take on Gloucester
The western province were unable to claim a point on their travels and Andy Friend can feel his resources getting tighter.
# Champions Cup
Cipriani swings it as Connacht suffer four-try loss in Gloucester
John Porch and Jack Carty helped the Westerners to a half-time lead, but it unravelled from there.
# Waiting Game
Jonathan Sexton to undergo scan on knee injury
The out-half looks set to miss at least the return fixture against Northampton.
# Skills
'I'm probably the last guy to try and offload' - Stander embracing Munster attack
The number eight says Stephen Larkham has been giving the players confidence to play.
# Spell on the Sidelines
Connacht star's Six Nations hopes dealt a blow with shoulder fracture
Tom Farrell sustained a scapula injury which will rule him out for approximately six weeks.
# honours even
'We're a club that doesn’t know how to give up' - Van Graan takes the two points
Munster now face into back-to-back ties with Saracens in Europe.
# shared spoils
Late JJ drop-goal slips wide as Russell inspires Racing to draw in Limerick
Johann van Graan’s men nearly grabbed a late, late win at Thomond Park.
AS IT HAPPENED
Munster v Racing 92, European Rugby Champions Cup
Donnacha Ryan and Simon Zebo were back in Limerick for a clash with their former club, we went minute-by-minute.
AS IT HAPPENED
Lyon v Leinster, European Rugby Champions Cup
Last year’s runners-up went to France to take on the Top14 leaders.
# Skills
Larkham enthusiastic about Munster's attack progress as Racing come to town
The Australian has made a positive impact since joining during the summer.
# number two
Scannell settled back in at Munster with Ireland's hooker spot up for grabs
The 27-year-old is keen to go to another World Cup with his country.
# Injury Update
Hanrahan returns to Munster training ahead of huge clash with Racing
Meanwhile, Stephen Larkham paid tribute to Alby Mathewson ahead of his departure.
# Breakdown
Analysis: Aki and Copeland shine as gritty Connacht dig in for crucial turnovers
Andy Friend’s side made some vital breakdown steals in their victory over Montpellier.
# exit door
Munster confirm Mathewson will leave province after Racing clash
The 33-year-old initially joined as short-term cover when Conor Murray was injured.
# reinforcements
Connacht in talks with IRFU about short-term signings as injury list mounts
The western province now have 16 players out injured.
# RISE UP
'In a weird way, that's actually what builds this team. It makes you have character'
Andy Friend’s Connacht will have a ‘red-hot crack’ at Toulouse after beating Montpellier.
# On The Road
Out-of-sorts Ospreys mean Munster have chance for perfect start in Europe
Johann van Graan’s side must not miss their opportunity to begin with a win in Swansea.
# Team news
Healy and Dillane return from injury in Connacht team to face Montpellier
Head coach Andy Friend is, however, missing several important players due to injury.
# named
Earls back for Munster as Loughman gets start at loosehead against Ospreys
Tadhg Beirne is set for his first appearance of the season off the bench in Wales.
# Fronting Up
Dillane keen for Connacht tempo against heavyweight Montpellier
The 26-year-old second row makes a timely return on Sunday in Galway.
# Last Four
'This club is building something special again' - Toulouse in confident mood ahead of trip to face Leinster
Toulouse saw off Clermont Auvergne in a top of the table clash on Sunday in France.
# Injury Update
Carbery still 'highly unlikely' for Munster as Earls and Kleyn look to prove fitness
Tyler Bleyendaal is set to wear Munster’s number 10 shirt against Saracens.
# Planning
Possible Heineken Cup semi-final venues for Irish provinces confirmed
The Aviva Stadium could be a host venue for the final four of the competition.
# Looking Back
'I went into that final thinking nothing could stop us': Simon Mason on Ulster, Ireland regrets and identity
The former full-back and goal kicker extraordinaire looks back on a famous Heineken Cup win 20 years ago.
# All in
Clean sweep for the provinces tees up riveting European quarter-finals
Irish rugby’s good health has been underlined in the Heineken Cup and Challenge Cup.
# Dan the Man
First quarter-final since 2014 is major achievement for Ulster boss McFarland
Yesterday’s comeback win against Leicester saw Ulster secure knock-out rugby in Europe.
# Defence
'I really like the idea of my family having different experiences'
Former Munster assistant coach Ian Costello is enjoying his challenging task with Wasps.
# Munster
'This is a team who is absolutely capable of winning the Heineken Cup'
Speaking on the latest episode of Heineken Rugby Weekly, Andy Dunne says he has been convinced that Johann van Graan’s side can be European champions.
# Fardy party
The Wallabies' loss has been Leinster's immense gain as Fardy shines
The 34-year-old Australian has been a superb signing for the province.
# Injury Update
Johnny Sexton ruled out of Wasps clash but 'not far off at all'
Devin Toner, Robbie Henshaw and Sean O’Brien are all back in full Leinster training this week.
# Racism
Racing 'strongly condemn racist insults' against Zebo during Ulster game
The French club says ‘racism has no place in rugby.’
# in depth
Analysis: Beirne's destruction, Earls' try-saver and Carbery's class
Johann van Graan’s Munster delivered their most compelling performance of the season on Friday night.
# form
Carbery shines for Munster in 'special performance' at Kingsholm
The 23-year-old out-half scored two tries and kicked at 100% for the third time in a row.
# Fright Night Lights
Farrell boost adds to Munster confidence for Kingsholm clash
Danny Cipriani’s return boosts Gloucester for what should be an absorbing European tie.