With the 6 Nations over for another year, the players thoughts return to their provinces. Both Ulster and Munster have Heineken Cup quarter-finals coming up, while Leinster face Wasps in the Amlin quarters.
Ulster face off against Saracens, at Twickenham. They may be without Luke Marshall for that clash, along with Ian Henderson, who also got injured against Italy. Tommy Bowe still isn’t recovered from his injury that ruled him out of the 6 Nations.
Munster face off against Harlequins. Keith Earls may not be available for that game, but Munster will be buoyed by the fact that Paul O’Connell makes his first start, since returning from long-term injury, in the Rabo this weekend, and should hopefully be fit to face ‘Quins.
Leinster face Wasps and will be without Luke Fitzgerald, who had just recently returned from injury. And Brian O’Driscoll, also, who will be still serving his ban. Leinster also received some bad news, with Isa Nacewa announcing that he will be retiring at the end of the season.
Nacewa had been a star for Leinster since he signed, and won 3 Heineken Cups with the province. His departure will be to the benefit of players like David Kearney but Nacewa will be missed.
Unfortunately, Michael’s were unable to retain their SCT title, and lost to Blackrock, 23-20. It was a great game (though they really should build some roofs in the RDS, I got completely soaked), probably the best of the season.
The Irish ladies managed a historic first-ever Grand Slam, by beating Italy, 6-3. It caps off wonderful season for the women, where they’ve been streets ahead of their male counterparts in terms of their performances.