Monday, May 20, 2024

Six Nations – Ireland v Scotland: All you need to know

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It’s Super Saturday as the 2024 Guinness Six Nations comes to a close.

Ireland host Scotland knowing a win or a draw will secure a second successive championship regardless of results elsewhere.

After beating France, Italy and Wales in their opening fixtures, Andy Farrell’s men came unstuck last time out, going down 23-22 to England in London.

They face a Scottish outfit that beat England in round three before falling short against Italy last weekend.

Gregor Townsend’s side are still on for a first Triple Crown since 1990 but haven’t beaten Ireland in their last nine meetings and have not won in Dublin since 2010.

That match was played in Croke Park and you have to go back to 1998 for the last time Scotland beat Ireland at Lansdowne Road.

Here’s all you need to know about the game.


Listen to live commentary on RTÉ Radio 1’s Saturday Sport, with Michael Corcoran and Donal Lenihan.


Follow a live blog on and the RTÉ News App followed by report, reaction and player ratings.


Ireland v Scotland will be live on Virgin Media.

Wales v Italy (2.15pm) and France v England (8pm) are live on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.

Watch highlights of all of the weekend’s games on Against the Head, Monday, 8pm, RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.


A wet day with rain developing during the morning and persisting for much of the day. Rather breezy too with moderate to fresh southerly winds. Highest temperatures of 11-13C. More details at

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After blowing their chance at a historic Grand Slam shot last weekend against England, Ireland must bounce back against Scotland to claim what would be just a sixth ever Six Nations title and a 16th outright championship.

The 16 points picked up so far after wins over France, Italy and Wales, and the losing bonus point last week, gives Farrell’s side a nice buffer going into the final round.

Two points, whether via a draw or two bonus points in defeat, or a win of any description, would take Ireland clear of the field and they would not have to concern themselves about the outcome of France v England in the last game.

However, if the unthinkable should happen and the hosts not pick up any points in a defeat to Triple Crown-chasing Scotland, then they would face an anxious wait for the final whistle in Lyon.

Should that occur, England, currently on 12 points, would claim the prize with a bonus-point victory. Tadhg Beirne’s try against Wales in round three could prove pivotal.

The sides last met in the pool stages of the World Cup

Scotland have been at their inconsistent best in the championship so far. They almost blew a 27-point lead on the opening day against Wales, before falling heartbreakingly short against France.

They lifted themselves for a good-value 30-21 win over England and subsequently lost to Italy, 31-29, in Rome.

They will be motivated by another shot at silverware but Ireland, after last weekend’s defeat, will avoid complacency.

In addition Ireland have won 13 of their last 14 Test matches against Scotland and have won each of their last 18 Test matches on home soil.

That’s their longest such run in Test rugby and only England (22 between 1999 & 2003) and New Zealand (30 between 2003 & 2008 and 47 between 2009 & 2017) have recorded longer winning runs at home in men’s Tier 1 Test rugby.

In team news Farrell has stuck with the same XV that lost out in Twickenham with Calvin Nash recovering from a head injury; Garry Ringrose is set for his first taste of Six Nations action this season off the bench.

Scotland make two changes to the side that lost in Italy, centre Stafford McDowall and scrum-half Ben White come into the side.


Ireland: Hugo Keenan; Calvin Nash, Robbie Henshaw, Bundee Aki, James Lowe; Jack Crowley, Jamison Gibson-Park; Andrew Porter, Dan Sheehan, Tadhg Furlong; Joe McCarthy, Tadhg Beirne, Peter O’Mahony (capt), Josh van der Flier, Caelan Doris.

Replacements: Rónan Kelleher, Cian Healy, Finlay Bealham, Ryan Baird, Jack Conan, Conor Murray, Harry Byrne, Garry Ringrose.

Scotland: Blair Kinghorn; Kyle Steyn, Huw Jones, Stafford McDowall, Duhan van der Merwe; Finn Russell (co-capt), Ben White; Pierre Schoeman, George Turner, Zander Fagerson; Grant Gilchrist, Scott Cummings; Andy Christie, Rory Darge, (co-capt), Jack Dempsey.

Replacements: Ewan Ashman, Rory Sutherland, Elliot Millar-Mills, Sam Skinner, Matt Fagerson, George Horne, Cameron Redpath, Kyle Rowe.


Referee: Matthew Carley (RFU)
Assistant Referee 1: Karl Dickson (RFU)
Assistant Referee 2: Christophe Ridley (RFU)
TMO: Marius Jonker (SARU)


Andy Farrell (Ireland head coach): “It’s a special occasion for everyone that’s connected with Irish rugby. The history shows you that this is very hard to do, back-to-back championships, and that’s what we’re going after and that’s a responsibility we’ve got in front of our face. It’s one we’ll relish, grab a hold of hopefully.”

Gregor Townsend (Scotland head coach): “We know we have to play our best rugby this week. We’re away to Ireland and it’s the ultimate challenge in the game right now. The huge motivator for us is to try and deliver our best rugby of the season.”


Ireland 36-14 Scotland – Stade de France (7 October 2023) World Cup Pool B

Scotland 7-22 Ireland – Murrayfield (12 March 2023) Six Nations

Ireland 26-5 Scotland – Aviva Stadium (19 March 2022) Six Nations

Scotland 24-27 Ireland – Murrayfield (14 March 2021) Six Nations

Ireland 31-16 Scotland – Aviva Stadium (5 December 2020) Autumn Nations Series

Elsewhere, Wales host Italy in the opening game of the day, 2.15pm in the Principality, while the tournament comes to a close when France host England in Lyon at 8pm Irish time.

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