Ryan signature in hot demand
THE race to secure Donnacha Ryan's signature is hotting up.
Ryan has been in negotiations with the IRFU since before Christmas, but while the 28-year-old is understood to have a preference for remaining in Ireland, it is believed French and English clubs are also interested in luring him away from Munster.
The second-row has also been linked with a switch to Leinster, which would make sense from an IRFU point of view as Donncha O'Callaghan and Paul O'Connell recently signed contract extensions to remain at Munster and having three centrally contracted players in the same position at the same province is not ideal.
Chabal 'heading to Oz'
AUSTRALIA's Super Rugby franchises have distanced themselves from Sebastien Chabal, who yesterday announced he would be moving Down Under.
The French forward severed his ties with Racing Metro last week and could be turning out for Balmain in Sydney's second division suburban competition, rather than the highest level.
"I will tell you a little secret," he told French radio. "I will play in Australia soon. For now, no more information.''
But Balmain president Warren Livingstone said: "We looked for the biggest-profile player in the world and that's Chabal.
"We contacted them (Racing Metro) in December about him coming over to play some games."
Reports in France suggest that Stade Francais are also chasing Chabal's signature, while Leinster would only move for the former Sale man if their proposed move for Brad Thorn collapsed.
FORMER Trinity prop and Ireland U-21 international Paul Doran-Jones has been called up to the England squad ahead of next week's Six Nations clash with Wales.
The Northampton front-rower is a temporary replacement for Bath's David Wilson, who has a jaw injury.
France have recalled Julien Dupuy ahead of their tie with Scotland, while the Scots could be without flanker Alasdair Strokosch for the rest of the Six Nations after he fractured his hand; wing Max Evans could miss the France clash with an ankle problem.