Ireland host France this weekend in the RBS 6 Nations with both sides unbeaten after round one. Having survived potential banana skins against Italy and Scotland respectively, who will have a 100% record going in to the third round of fixtures?
Back in 2011, defending champions France travelled to Dublin at the same stage of the championship and took advantage of Irish indiscipline to claim victory.
Ireland started the contest well and scored an early try through Fergus McFadden, and ensured they went in at half time with a lead after Tomas O’Leary touched down. However the lead was only three points as Ireland allowed the visitors to keep in touch through a succession of penalties, each duly dispatched by Morgan Parra.
Parra’s fifth successful kick ensured parity was restored early in the second half, and when Maxime Medard crossed the line after Gordon D’Arcy missed a tackle on Aurelien Rougerie, the French had the lead despite trailing in the try count.
A further penalty by Dimitri Yachvili increased the lead, and despite a Jamie Heaslip try with 13 minutes to go, France were able to hold on and maintain their unbeaten start.
In the end it came down to the penalty count, as Ireland conceded 16 to France’s nine. Joe Schmidt will be keen to ensure Irish infringements are kept to a minimum at Croke Park this weekend. France skipper and Gilbert Ambassador Thierry Dusautoir was named as Man of the Match.
It's another mouthwatering clash in the RBS 6 Nations; who will maintain their 100% record after this weekend?
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The Six Nations Championship is an annual international rugby union competition involving six European sides: England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales. It is sponsored by the Royal Bank of Scotland.
The 2015 RBS 6 Nations tournament is the first time that the same match ball will be used in every single match. The Match-XV, the Rugby World Cup 2015 match ball represents the pinnacle of rugby ball technology. With it’s enhanced grip properties and consistency of manufacture, it is undoubtedly the finest piece of rugby ball technology ever produced.
Round 1 results:
06/02/2015 20:05 WALES 16 - 21 ENGLAND Millennium Stadium
07/02/2015 15:30 ITALY 3 - 26 IRELAND Stadio Olimpico
07/02/2015 18:00 FRANCE 15 - 8 SCOTLAND Stade de France