March rugby calendar: Your guide to the month’s fixtures
The Six Nations comes to its conclusion and European quarter-finals finish a busy month
The destiny of the Six Nations Championship will be decided in the next fortnight with Warren Gatland’s unbeaten Wales heading to Murrayfield for a clash with an injury-hit Scotland before hosting Ireland in what Welsh supporters will be hoping is a tilt at a Grand Slam.
England, despite their loss in Cardiff, appear well equipped to gather up 10 points in their last two matches.
Joe Schmidt’s Irish side host France at the Aviva stadium hoping to rediscover a playing rhythm ahead of their assignment in Cardiff.
The Ireland Under-20 side are still fostering hopes of a Grand Slam and next up is a game against France as the reigning world champions visit Cork. If Ireland win then everything will be on the line in Colwyn Bay on the last weekend.
There are a couple of rounds in the Guinness Pro14 this month with several pivotal fixtures in terms of the playoffs beginning this weekend when Connacht host the Ospreys and Benetton welcome Edinburgh to the Stadio Comunale di Monigo.
At the end of the month, attention will turn to the Champions and Challenge Cups once again.
Leinster and Ulster meet in a quarter-final at the Aviva stadium, while Munster travel to Murrayfield to try and find a way past Edinburgh.
Connacht meet Sale for the third time this season in a Challenge Cup quarter-final at the AJ Bell stadium.
(all times Irish)
Pro 14: Leinster v Cheetahs (7.35)
AIL Division 2A: Nenagh Ormond v Cashel (8.0)
Pro 14: Connacht v Ospreys (2.45); Benetton Rugby v Edinburgh (3.0); Scarlets v Munster (5.0); Zebre v Glasgow (5.15); Cardiff Blues v Southern Kings (7.35)
AIL Division 1A (2.30): Dublin University v Terenure; Garryowen v Cork Constitution; Lansdowne v Young Munster; UCC v Shannon; UCD v Clontarf.
Division 1B (2.30): Ballynahinch v Naas; City of Armagh v Ballymena; Malone v Buccaneers; Old Wesley v Banbridge (1.15); St Mary’s v Old Belvedere.
Division 2A (2.30): Blackrock v QUB; Galwegians v Dolphin; Highfield v Old Crescent; UL Bohemian v Navan.
Division 2B (2.30): Belfast Harlequins v Wanderers; Dungannon v Corinthians RFC; Skerries v Rainey OB; Sligo v Greystones; Sunday’s Well v MU Barnhall.
Division 2C (2.30): Bangor v Tullamore; Malahide v Midleton; Omagh v City of Derry; Seapoint v Bruff; Thomond v Ballina.
Pro 14: Dragons v Ulster (3.0)
Under-20 Six Nations Championship: Ireland v France, Musgrave Park (7.15); Scotland v Wales, Meggetland, Edinburgh (7.30); England v Italy, Bedford (7.45)
Women’s Six Nations: Scotland v Wales, Scotstoun (7.35)
Six Nations Championship: Scotland v Wales, Murrayfield (2.15); England v Italy, Twickenham (4.45).
Women’s Six Nations: England v Italy, Sandy Park (12.05); Ireland v France, Donnybrook (7.0)
AIL Division 1A (2.30): Clontarf v Shannon; Cork Constitution v Lansdowne; Terenure v UCC; UCD v Garryowen; Young Munster v Dublin University.
Division 1B (2.30): Ballymena v Banbridge; Buccaneers v Ballynahinch; City of Armagh v St Mary’s; Naas v Old Wesley; Old Belvedere v Malone.
Division 2A (2.30): Cashel v Galwegians; Navan v OldCrescent;QUB v Nenagh Ormond; UL Bohemian v Blackrock.
Division 2B (2.30): Dungannon v Sunday’s Well; Corinthians v Rainey OB; Greystones v Skerries; MU Barnhall v Belfast Harlequins; Wanderers v Sligo.
Division 2C (2.30): Ballina v Bruff; City of Derry v Bangor; Midleton v Omagh; Thomond v Malahide; Tullamore v Seapoint.
Six Nations Championship: Ireland v France, Aviva Stadium (3.0)
Under-20 Six Nations Championship: Italy v France, Piedmont (6.0); Wales v Ireland, Parc Eirias, Colwyn Bay (7.05); England v Scotland, Franklin’s Gardens, Northampton (7.45)
AIL Division 2A: Dolphin v Highfield (8.0)
Six Nations Championship: Italy v France, Stadio Olimpico, Rome (12.30) ; Wales v Ireland, Principality stadium, Cardiff (2.45); England v Scotland, Twickenham (5.0)
Women’s Six Nations: England v Scotland, Twickenham (7.30)
Women’s Six Nations: Wales v Ireland, Cardiff Arms Park (1.30); Italy v France, Padova (1.30)
Pro 14 (7.35): Cardiff Blues v Scarlets; Connacht v Benetton Rugby; Edinburgh v Leinster
AIL Division 2A (8.0): Blackrock v Navan; Nenagh Ormond v UL Bohemian.
Division 2B: Skerries v Wanderers (8.0)
Pro 14: Ospreys v Dragons (3.0); Ulster v Southern Kings (5.30); Glasgow v Cheetahs (7.45); Munster v Zebre (7.45).
AIL Division 1A (2.30): Dublin University v Cork Constitution; Garryowen v Clontarf ; Lansdowne v UCD; Shannon v Terenure; UCC v Young Munster.
Division 1B (2.30): Ballynahinch v Old Belvedere; Banbridge v Naas; Malone v City of Armagh; Old Wesley v Buccaneers; St Mary’s v Ballymena.
Division 2A (2.30): Galwegians v QUB; Highfield v Cashel; Old Crescent v Dolphin.
Division 2B (2.30): Belfast Harlequins v Dungannon; Rainey OB v Greystones; Sligo v MU Barnhall; Sunday’s Well v Corinthians.
Division 2C (2.30): Bangor v Midleton; Bruff v Tullamore; Malahide v Ballina; Omagh v Thomond; Seapoint v City of Derry.
Challenge Cup quarter-final: Sale v Connacht (7.45)
Champions Cup quarter-finals: Edinburgh v Munster (12.45); Saracens v Glasgow (3.15); Leinster v Ulster, Aviva stadium (5.45)
Challenge Cup quarter-final: Worcester v Harlequins (8.15)
Champions Cup quarter-final: Racing 92 v Toulouse (3.15)
Challenge Cup quarter-finals: La Rochelle v Bristol (12.45); Clermont Auvergne v Northampton (6.0).