Ireland 17 Scotland 13 (FT): Ireland claim back-to-back Six Nations titles

Follow all of the reaction after Andy Farrell’s side came out on top in a hard-fought battle at the Aviva Stadium


Ireland 17 Scotland 13


Rumours in the build-up that this would be his last game for Ireland retained that status in his post-match pitch interview afterwards, when asked to address the speculation. The Irish captain, through a hint of a smile, said: “I don’t know, I have a few chats to have with family and stuff over the next couple of weeks. If it was my last one it is not a bad one to go out on.”

—  Peter O'Mahony

Plenty of talk on if this was Peter O’Mahony’s last game in green. Safe to say, the conversation will go on until he makes his final decision.


In our first piece of written content, John O’Sullivan runs the rule over the Irish players.


Some post match content coming your way. Firstly, listen back on Twitter as Gordon D’Arcy, John O’Sullivan and myself chatted through Ireland’s victory.


It wasn’t pretty. Ireland were nowhere near their best, but they had enough ball and enough opportunities to open up a lead and cling on. Scotland were poor going forward in that second half, offering no threat at all until their late try. Ireland were wasteful themselves, but they only needed one second half try from Andrew Porter to secure it.

Ireland have won back to back Six Nations!



Ireland hold on! They secure the ball at the back of the scrum and go through enough phases to kill the clock. The ball is launched into the stands and the celebrations are well and truly underway at the Aviva!


79 mins: Huge moment as Scotland spill the ball trying to run it back after the kick-off. Ireland have a scrum and they’ll be doing all they can to drag this one out.

Meanwhile, Harry Byrne’s card stays at yellow, given the degree of danger was not high. Again, it doesn’t matter given he’d be off for the remainder of the game either way.

Ireland 17 Scotland 13



Well this just got interesting all of a sudden. Running against 14 men, Scotland break through as Jones shrugs off a tackle and dots down under the posts. Russell converts, Ireland are only 4 points up with two-and-a-half minutes remaining!

Ireland 17 Scotland 13



Byrne definitely makes high contact with the head of Russell. He’ll go off for a bunker review, not that it will matter with less than five minutes remaining.


76 mins: Lowe comes inches away from a 50:22, only for the bounce to take it away from the touchline. Scotland look to run it out and they get a penalty for a high shot.

TMO time again! Harry Byrne looks to have made a high tackle on Russell. He could be in trouble here.

Ireland 17 Scotland 6


74 mins: Henshaw spills in midfield, costing Ireland an attacking chance. Ireland win it back, with Byrne clearing downfield. That was a good kick, close to a 50:22 only Rowe in the backfield made up a lot of ground to gather.

Ireland 17 Scotland 6


72 mins: Ireland’s maul is dangerous as it thunders towards the line. Scotland, though, do well, stopping the initial drive and then holding the ball up when Ireland look to splinter off. They’ll have another scrum close to their own line.

Ireland 17 Scotland 6


71 mins: Mistake from Scotland as they kick the ball out on the full. Ireland make another change, with Conor Murray on for Gibson-Park. At the lineout, Scotland pull an Irish arm in the air and duly give away a penalty.

Ireland 17 Scotland 6


68 mins: Ireland make another change. Larmour is off, Harry Byrne is on. I suspect Crowley will revert to 15. Cian Healy is also on for Porter.

Ireland 17 Scotland 6



After all that, some deception and misdirection off the tap penalty sends Porter over the line. Surely, that is both the match and the championship decided in Ireland’s favour.

Ireland 17 Scotland 6


NO TRY! Redpath has somehow managed to hold Henshaw up over the line. However, there was advantage being played. Not just that, but Scotland are down to 14 as Euan Ashman sees yellow for too repeated team penalties inside the 22. Ireland will tap and go with the penalty close to the line.

Meanwhile, as the check was happening, Peter O’Mahony was replaced by Jack Conan. A big ovation for the captain. As things stand, it remains unclear if this is his last Six Nations game or not.



From up here in the stand, it looks like Henshaw has gotten that down over the line. Carley wants to check upstairs.

In the build-up, O’Mahony scooped a ball up off his toes beautifully to keep the play alive. TMO time!


63 mins: Wow. Larmour almost gifts Scotland a try when spilling a routine pass inside his own 22. Scotland then nearly gift Ringrose a score with a spill of their own, the replacement breaking all the way into the 22. Eventually van der Merwe hauls him down, but Ireland still have it!


60 mins: ANOTHER ERROR! Ireland go close off a maul but, again once they go wide, a handling error costs them. This time it’s Ringrose who spills while trying to dive over from close range. Again, Scotland survive.

They then get a penalty at the ensuing scrum as Bealham collapses.


58 mins: Ireland go to the maul. They don’t make much ground, then they spill the ball after going wide but they did have an advantage. Scotland slipped offside and Crowley goes to the corner.


56 mins: Ireland again get away with some poor play. Larmour’s kick to Russell is too deep and then Baird loses an aerial contest far too easily. Luckily for Ireland, a loose pass leads to Gilchrist hacking it forward and then a teammate playing it in an offside position.

Farrell makes another change, Ringrose on at wing for Nash.


54 mins: CHANCE! Nash spills the ball inches from the line. It all started from a brilliant Aki pullback pass. Henshaw crashed up before the ball went wide to Nash. His step inside was a beauty, taking him close but he can’t hang on as he comes to ground. Scotland survive.

The scrum close to their own line is under pressure, but they do enough to force a clearance. Ireland make two changes, Kelleher on for Sheehan at hooker and Baird on for McCarthy in the secondrow.


52 mins: Ireland demolish the Scotland scrum to get an advantage. Carley says advantage over when they kick it in behind, even though Scotland gather through van der Merwe. Ireland flood the breakdown and eventually force a rushed clearance. Ireland lineout still inside the Scottish 22.


50 mins: CHANCE! Gibson-Park saves Ireland. McDowell was making ground and looking to free the arms for a potentially try-scoring offload, only for Gibson-Park to read it and intercept.

Ireland make a change. Furlong is off for a HIA, Bealham is on. Furlong looked wrecked before this, HIA or otherwise.


49 mins: Another handling error. Furlong wasn’t expecting McCarthy to jump out of the way of a pass, so he spills when it comes his way. Scotland make changes, Sutherland on for Schoeman, Ashman on for Turner. Both changes in the frontrow.


NO TRY! The home crowd is incensed. It was very marginal, but I think Carley’s on-field decision was no try. So the evidence wasn’t there to overturn his decision. Looks like Fagerson did just enough to dislodge the ball and prevent the grounding.



Ireland’s prop has barrelled his way over the line but did he get it down? We also need to check for a knock on from Sheehan off the tap and go.

Ireland have seen a replay and are happy enough, marching back beyond halfway. I’m not so sure, Fagerson could well have knocked the ball out of Furlong’s hand here.


47 mins: CHANCE! Lowe spills a pass over his head that could well have led to a try. Henshaw and Aki carried hard to get Ireland close, but the pass from Gibson-Park is too high. Scotland were offside, so back we go. O’Mahony asks about a card but nothing doing. Decision time, the penalty is in front of the posts... they’re going to tap and go!


44 mins: There’s the customary error from Finn Russell. Looking to inject some tempo and go quick with the restart, he kicks it out on the full. Ireland scrum on halfway.

Precious momentum for Ireland. Porter wins a scrum turnover and The Fields are bellowing around the Aviva. Say what you want about the atmosphere, the crowd is doing its best to give this side a much-needed lift.


42 mins: Penalty Ireland! The attack started well, but ended looking quite sluggish. Lowe’s beautiful offload over the head of a defender sends Aki away into the 22. From that break, Ireland look devoid of ideas but Scotland give away a breakdown penalty. This should be an easy kick for Crowley and it is. First score of the half goes to Ireland.

Ireland 10 Scotland 6


41 mins: It’ll be Ireland who kick things off in the second half. Crowley launches the ball high where Gilchrist claims for Scotland close to his own 22. White clears immediately, Larmour taking and countering into the Scotland half.


Here come the teams once again. Second half underway shortly.


Ireland have dominated possession and territory so far, but the most telling stat is turnovers: Ireland have coughed up the ball 10 times already. Lots of endeavour, but no precision or, incision for that matter. There’s a touch of going wide before they’ve earned the right to, expect them to narrow up a touch at the start of the second half.

That and the breakdown have been the big issues. Scotland deserve a lot of credit for their disruption there.


It’s been a bizarre, low quality game. Ireland have been sluggish. Too often not direct enough with their carrying, Scotland have been able to sit off and hit the runners out the back.

In defence, Ireland have been caught short of numbers a few times but they have scrambled well. Scotland haven’t offered enough threat really. Andy Christie has been fantastic for them defensively, spoiling Ireland’s ruck ball time and again.

There will be some stern words at half-time, no doubt. Not panic stations yet for Ireland, they are winning despite a poor performance after all, but they need to come out of the blocks with a lot more urgency and purpose after the break.

Just Dan Sheehan’s fortuitous try to speak of so far!


Half-time: Ireland 7 Scotland 6

Ireland’s last attack of the half comes to an end when an attempted offload to O’Mahony flies into touch.


40 mins: Ireland’s attack is side to side, going nowhere. Eventually, Sheehan makes a break after good work from O’Mahony and Larmour, but he has to release the ball before he goes into touch. Scotland clear and Nash is in a footrace inside his own 22 to stop Kinghorn from scoring. He gets there first but is hit high. Penalty is given, no card.

Ireland could end the half, but Crowley will kick down the line for one last attack.


39 mins: That’s brilliant from Gibson-Park. He reads Scotland’s set play well, tracking Russell behind the decoys to hit him as soon as he gets the ball. Scotland recover, but now they spill when trying to secure possession at a loose ruck. Another scrum!


37 mins: Another Ireland error. Scotland make a mess of the breakdown again and van der Flier spills while trying to recover it at the back. Looked like the ball went backwards, but Carley thought otherwise as he awards Scotland the scrum.


35 mins: Another break for Ireland. Lowe’s kick in behind is poor, easily dealt with and returned by Russell. Ireland are forced to clear under pressure, but they get a simple penalty when Schoeman crosses wires with a teammate, resulting in crossing. Crowley will have a kick at goal from just inside the Scottish half.

He misses! Wide left. Central enough position, but he’s hooked it.


32 mins: Penalty Ireland! Furlong gets Schoeman to stand up in the scrum and Carley sticks up his arm. Furlong simply overpowered his opposite number there. Crowley kicks down the line, giving his side a lineout close to the 22.

Scotland thwart them again! Van der Flier gets held up in a choke tackle, Scotland flood the ball on the floor and wini the turnover. Christie again is a real thorn in Ireland’s side, he was the one to hold van der Flier off the floor there.


30 mins: A lucky break dor Ireland. Russell has quick ball to work with as on overlap is found down the left hand side. However, van der Merwe spills his pass forward just as they were stretching the defence.


29 mins: That’s as dangerous as Scotland have looked all day. Bundee Aki misses a routine tackle in midfield and McDowell breaks well into the Ireland half. The defence does recover, meaning White box kicks in behind. Ireland lineout inside their own 22.


26 mins: Ireland still look pretty scrappy. They under-resource a ruck out wide and Andy Christie, who has been a nuisance at the breakdown throughout this contest, counter-rucks to win the turnover. Joe McCarthy then knocks on in the tackle to give Scotland a scrum. The crowd aren’t happy, given Scotland kicked the ball, but it was a kick under pressure so back we go for the advantage.


24 mins: This time a Crowley kick in behind doesn’t come off. He’s trying to once again pin Scotland by finding touch inside the 22, only for it to roll dead beyond the try-line instead.


22 mins: Van der Flier comes up with a steal for Ireland. That was a good defensive set, responding well to the threat of Russell behind his forward pods as Doris and Furlong both made big hits to drive play back before van der Flier got in over the ball. Crowley kicks the penalty up towards the 22.


20 mins: Kinghorn gets away with one for Scotland. After a decent attack set up by a lovely Nash offload to Aki, Crowley once again grubbers in behind. It looks like Kinghorn got a touch on it before the ball bounced dead, or at least came close to it, but the officials say no. Scotland will clear with a 22 drop-out.


17 mins: Scotland get a chance to hit back. It’s a good attack from them, going from flank to flank and stressing Ireland. Joe McCarthy jumps the gun and is caught offside. An Aki hit on van der Merwe takes the sting out of the attack and we go back for the penalty. It’s in a central position, right outside the 22... easy for Russell. One-point game.

Ireland 7 Scotland 6



Ireland are over! It’s an absolute gift. Scotland miss their mark at the lineout, hooker George Turner throwing the ball over his jumper. Sheehan catches it at the back and says thank you very much as he dives over from close range. He won’t score an easier try in his international career. Crowley converts.

Ireland 7 Scotland 3


12 mins: Ireland are starting to become far more direct with their carrying and it’s working. Henshaw and Lowe both make ground before Scotland are caught offside. Crowley kicks the penalty into the corner, Ireland have a lineout 5m from the Scottish line.

Brilliant defence! Ireland go with a short move to engineer a chance for Sheehan, but he is bundled into touch. Clever move, but it doesn’t pay off!


11 mins: Scotland clear but Ireland come again. They want another penalty, this time for a late hit on Crowley, but again no decision comes. This time Lowe kicks in behind to pin Scotland close to their own line.


9 mins: Ireland win the ball back off the kick-off but the ruck speed is slow. Ireland want a penalty for Scotland killing it, none is forthcoming. Crowley grubbers in behind, pinning Scotland back inside their 22 as he finds touch.


7 mins: Penalty Scotland! Lowe takes a high bomb very well under pressure, but he undoes the good work by crawling on the floor after he’s tackled. Russell points to the sticks. He’ll have a kick 15m in from touch, 40 metres from goal.

No mistake from the Scotland 10! The visitors lead.

Ireland 0 Scotland 3


5 mins: Both sides happy to kick to each other at the moment. It looks comfortable enough, until Lowe is charged down! Scottish backrow Andy Christie gets the block and Ireland are fortunate that rolled into touch metres from their own line.

Free-kick Scotland! Ireland infringe at the lineout, looks like they didn’t respect the gap. Scotland tap and go but Ireland turn it over! McCarthy with the rip in the tackle. Ireland clear. What a frantic few minutes.


2 mins: Loose enough play. The lineout is sloppy but Ireland just about hold onto it. Beirne then spills a tip-pass from Doris and Russell clears. Larmour tries to run it back, running across the pitch but Jones wraps him up easily. Gibson-Park eventually clears.


1 min: Finn Russell has the ball and will kick off for Scotland. Referee Matthew Carley blows his whistle and the ball sails long into the Irish 22. Doris gathers and crashes up. Gibson-Park sets up a clearance and keeps it just infield. Russell gathers and his pass is loose. Van der Merwe is scragged by O’Mahony and Sheehan gets in over the ball to win a penalty. Good start for Ireland!


Anthems done, it’s time to go. Six Nations title on the line.


Tadhg Beirne leads Ireland out on the occasion of his 50th cap.


An interesting tactic from the IRFU to boost the atmosphere. Donncha O’Callaghan has been given a microphone and is roaring at us from the middle of the pitch. The results are, em, interesting.


There’s also a late change to the Scottish team.


There’s a late change to the Ireland team! Hugo Keenan has been ruled out through injury, Jordan Larmour comes in at 15.


It’s full-time in the early game and Wales have lost, leaving them with the wooden spoon!

Full-time: Wales 21 Italy 24


What do Keith Wood, Shane Horgan, Denis Hickie, Simon Easterby, Paul Wallace, Mick Galwey, Jeremy Davidson, Rob Henderson, Eric Miller and Syd Millar all have in common?

None of them ever won a Six Nations Championship title with Ireland.

—  Gerry Thornley

Arguably the biggest talking point of the week, are we turning our noses up at a Six Nations title because we want a Grand Slam or nothing? Are we becoming spoiled as a rugby public? Gerry Thornley certainly thinks we are.



From almost halving Elliot Daly with a tackle that displaced the ball in the 67th minute of the game against England to fielding high balls and selflessly muscling up into the charging English bodies, Aki has carried his World Cup form into this Six Nations.

—  Johnny Watterson

Who’s been Ireland’s player of the tournament so far? For many, it’s Bundee Aki. Johnny Watterson explains why the Connacht centre has been so successful to date in this campaign.


Here’s some tactics/data for you. From Scotland’s backfield defence to their porous line in the wide channels, here are five ways Ireland can bounce back to beat Scotland.


Both Scotland and Ireland would have dreamed of it being the final leg of a shot at the Grand Slam and, accordingly, they each have what-might-have-been narratives from the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, up to and including decidedly deflating defeats just a week ago.

—  Gerry Thornley

There is plenty of pre-match reading for you to get through. Gerry Thornley previews today’s clash, a snippet of which you can read above. You can find the full article here.


As for Scotland, their headline team news is the inclusion of Stafford McDowell at 12. Sione Tuipulotu is injured, while Cam Redpath is relegated to the bench. McDowell is included, as John O’Sullivan writes, to deal with the physical threat of Bundee Aki in the Irish midfield.


Let’s start with today’s team news. Ireland have gone for an unchanged starting XV as Andy Farrell gives his charges an opportunity to bounce back from last weekend’s defeat. The only real question mark was Calvin Nash, who departed proceedings at Twickenham due to a HIA. He’s gone through the return to play process and is good to go.

On the bench, the 6-2 split is gone with Garry Ringrose back on the bench. Ciarán Frawley hasn’t made it through his own HIA process, so Harry Byrne is promoted to the bench. Iain Henderson misses out given the abandoning of the 6-2.


Hello all and welcome to live coverage of what is the final Saturday of the Six Nations! Nathan Johns here to guide you through all the action as it happens from Ireland’s clash with Scotland at the Aviva Stadium.

For Ireland, the equation is simple. Win, and the title is theirs, even after last weekend’s defeat to England at Twickenham.