38 Of The Best Rugby Photos Of 2014

38 Of The Best Rugby Photos Of 2014
By Conor O'Leary
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Rugby Photos Of The Year 2014

2014 will go down as a memorable year in the history of Irish rugby. Aside from the huge success from the men's national side, the women's team became the first Irish side to beat New Zealand, while Leinster won the Pro12, Munster reached the semi finals of the Heineken Cup and Connacht signed their first All Black. Not to be left out, Ulster contributed more players to the Irish squad than in recent memory, with a number of further Ulster players unavailable through injury.

Here are the best photos from the rugby year from Sportsfile. Note, we've intentionally left out the rugby photos which appear in "22 of the best Irish Sports Photos Of 2014"

Darren Cave forgets which way is up in January against Munster.
Matt O'Connor seems displeased at getting his photo taken 26 seconds from the end of beating Connacht in the Sportsground in January
Paul Marshall is as lost as we are about whether Trimble is joking or in pain at January training.
Jimmy Gopperth hands off an Ospreys defender in a heated Heineken Cup pool game in January
In the same game, Mike McCarthy has words with Alun Wyn Jones after Ian Evans was sent off for using his boot to connect with McCarthy's face.
Simon Zebo kept celebrating with a "Z", this time against Edinburgh in January.
Rob Kearney is really really excited that he scored a try against the Scots in the first 6 Nations game in early February.
Ruan Pienaar was tasked with keeping Ulster steady while the internationals were away, here is is making a tackle on Osprey's Matthew Morgan.
John Plumtree was a revelation for the Irish pack with his unorthodox methods.
A great picturesque scene as Max Deegan of St. Michael's College carries against Blackrock in the Leinster Schools Senior Cup.
Jonny Sexton scores in the corner after a delightful O'Driscoll offload against Italy...
... but slips when Sean Cronin comes to celebrate.
That Italian game also saw the farewell to O'Driscoll on Irish soil.
Before Ireland beat France in Paris to claim the 6 Nations.

Some folks were delighted...
Others wanted their magnificent beards to hog the limelight.
It was the last sighting of this brilliant centre pairing in green.
Now that's a good farewell for O'Driscoll's international career.
Back home, Barry Walsh was delighted to score the winning try for St. Gerald's of Castlebar in a great Connacht Schools Junior Cup Final.
Munster hammered Toulouse in Thomond Park in the Heineken Cup semi final.
Soon to be Leinster winger, Mick McGrath helped Clontarf beat the Barbarians in the celebrations of the anniversary of the Battle Of Clontarf.
Cian Healy nearly makes this an awkward photo for Ian Madigan and Jamie Heaslip to explain...
Although someone will have some explaining to do after this selfie stick was spotted.
Paul O'Connell rules the skies in both hemispheres.
Devin Toner demonstrating to kids at a summer camp how tall he really is.
While Rhys Ruddock uses the Leinster open day to smack Mike McCarthy right in the face.
The Irish women did something the Men's team could never quite do...
and that's reach the semi final of a World Cup. Not what you thought I'd say huh?
Robbie Henshaw is concerned that an All Black has come to Galway to take his place.
But Pat Lam is in high spirits, especially after beating Leinster in the Sportsground in September.
Things didn't get any better for Leinster as they bowed down to Peter O'Mahony's Hulk impression.
O'Mahony got angry at Scarlet's Phil John for not doing the same...
Cian Kelleher is the newest try scoring machine in the Leinster academy, here's a photo of him in the rain.
Tommy Bowe's reward for sealing the win over South Africa was to have two rugby players jump on top of him.

While an old face appeared at Leinster training in November.
Paul O'Connell scared the colour out of this picture...

While Peter O'Mahony decides to show off his massive arms to force Australia into surrender.

Connacht's Darragh Leader approves.



See Also:

22 Of The Best Irish Sports Photos Of 2014
24 Of The Best GAA Photos Of 2014
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