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As Sergio Parisse takes part in perhaps his last Six Nations, RICHARD LUCK pays tribute to a sporting great who found himself in a team of also-rans, and wonders what might have been.

After 12 months of lunacy, Steve Anglesey names his twit parade, with JRM of the ERG at number one.

Theresa May says that Labour voting down her Brexit plan would be a "betrayal of the British people".

The next two weeks will come to define Britain's future.

In the most unlikely place, PATRICK SAWER finds a poignant family link to Italy's fascist past and a reminder that this dark chapter of the country's history is not yet closed.

Britain's declining influence has put global security in peril. And it is entirely self-inflicted, says James P. Rubin, a former aide to Bill Clinton

As the new season kicks-off JAMES BROWN looks at an unexpectedly exotic managerial appointment which offers a ray of hope for his club.

STEVE ANGLESEY rounds-up the losers and the losers (because there are no winners) of another crazy seven days on Planet Brexit

Post-Brexit Britain is pinning its hopes on a US-UK trade deal. Such a deal would open the door to the destruction of the NHS as we know it, says Youssef El-Gingihy

The matches themselves might be bearable, but everything else surrounding England's World Cup bid is a bore, says an unenthused CAROLINE CRIADO PEREZ.

ROGER DOMENEGHETTI explains why the 1966 tournament established the template for televised football that still holds today, even if the replays did take a little getting used to

The World Cup has never lived up to its lofty ideals, says GLENN MOORE, as he recounts a history of corruption, match-fixing, boycotts and giving succour to dictatorships.

As the World Cup kicks off in Russia, MITCH BENN is inspired by David Beckham's never-give-up attitude to his England career.

MICHAEL WHITE discusses U-turns from the PM and Boris Johnson as they try to keep a lid on the Brexit betrayal chaos

Amid much global gloom, PAUL KNOTT finds an area of the world which much to be confident about​.

Here is a selection of some of the best quotes from an extraordinary year in politics.

As ambitions go, Lee Humphries' is an unusual, if lofty, one - to ascend the highest points of 100 different countries. As he crests the halfway mark in his quest, he explains all to Julian Shea.

Deep in the Arctic is a vault built to help save the world from disaster. But it may not be as secure as we had hoped

Few family histories better underline the complex relationship between Britain and Germany than Christian Lawrence's. Here he explains why his fellow countrymen are so sad to see the UK leave

The EU was not conceived to regulate the curvature of a banana. It was conceived to regulate our propensity to kill each other.

Unanimously anti-Brexit, unanimously pro-British, Gibraltar must rely on the word of a government without many cards to play.

There's danger in getting too close to Donald Trump. As Theresa May heads to the White House she needs to keep her distance

Jeremy Clarkson and his Grand Tour cronies built a Brexit juggernaut and blew up everything in its path

No one wears their poppy with more pride that I do. But in the row over whether international footballers should wear them, Fifa are right. And the hot air the issue has prompted tells you everything about what is wrong with Britain today

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