Ireland and Scotland finished as runners up in their respective Autumn Nations Cup pools which means the teams will finish their tournament with a clash in Dublin on Saturday.
Ireland v Scotland, Saturday 5th December, Dublin, KO 16:15 (South African time)
Referee: Matthew Carley
Assistant Referees: Romain Poite, Karl Dickson
TMO: Dan Jones
Weather Forecast: Dublin
Ireland finished as runners up to England in Pool A and the decisive game of the pool came at Twickenham when England came out on top 18-7. Ireland began the Nations Cup really well, easily covering a minus handicap in putting Wales away 32-9 in Dublin. Last week they were 28-10 winners at home to Georgia.
Ireland now renew rivalry with Scotland whom they beat 19-12 in the opening round of the 6 Nations early in the year. They scored the only try of that game although the Scots gave them plenty of problems and were arguably a touch unlucky to lose.
Scotland finished as runners up to France in Pool B. Their slated clash with Fiji last week was cancelled and they came up short in the defining match of the pool at home to France when were beaten 22-15, just the wrong side of the pre-match handicap. Their tournament began in Italy and the Scots came through with a 28-17 win. The final score in that game saw punters who tok the -10.5 on the handicap squeeze home.
Scotland have lost 7 of the last 8 Six Nations and RWC head to heads against Ireland. Their only recent success came in Edinburgh in 2017 and you have to go back to 2010 for their last win in Dublin.
Ireland: 15 Jacob Stockdale, 14 Hugo Keenan, 13 Bundee Aki, 12 Robbie Henshaw, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Jonathan Sexton (c), 9 Conor Murray, 8 Caelan Doris, 7 Peter O’Mahony, 6 CJ Stander, 5 James Ryan, 4 Iain Henderson, 3 Andrew Porter, 2 Rob Herring, 1 Cian Healy
Replacements: 16 Ronan Kelleher, 17 Eric O’Sullivan, 18 John Ryan, 19 Quinn Roux, 20 Josh van der Flier, 21 Jamison Gibson-Park, 22 Ross Byrne, 23 Chris Farrell
Scotland: 15 Stuart Hogg (c), 14 Darcy Graham, 13 Chris Harris, 12 Duncan Taylor, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Jaco van der Walt, 9 Ali Price, 8 Matt Fagerson, 7 Jamie Ritchie, 6 Blade Thomson, 5 Jonny Gray, 4 Scott Cummings, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 Fraser Brown, 1 Rory Sutherland
Replacements: 16 Stuart McInally, 17 Oli Kebble, 18 Willem Nel, 19 Sam Skinner, 20 Blair Cowan, 21 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 22 Huw Jones, 23 Sean Maitland
6N & RWC Head to Head (any venue)
2020 6N Dublin Ireland 19-12 Scotland (Tries 1-0)
2019 RWC Yokohama Ireland 27-3 Scotland (Tries 4-0)
2019 6N Edinburgh Scotland 10-22 Ireland (Tries 1-3)
2018 6N Dublin Ireland 28-8 Scotland (Tries 4-1)
2017 6N Edinburgh Scotland 27-22 Ireland (Tries 3-3)
2016 6N Dublin Ireland 35–25 Scotland (Tries 4-3)
2015 6N Edinburgh Scotland 10-40 Ireland (Tries 1-4)
2014 6N Dublin Ireland 28–6 Scotland (Tries 3-0)
2013 6N Edinburgh Scotland 12-8 Ireland (Tries 0-1)
The Betting – Handicap
Ireland -9.5 points at 9/10 widely available
Scotland +10.5 points at 9/10 BetXChange
Note, odds quoted are correct at the time of writing but are subject to change.
Scotland have had a solid season but with a degree of gut feel I'm with Ireland on the minus here.
Sexton returns and I fancy the home side can return to the sort of touch that saw them put Wales away at the start of this tournament. Whilst I don't envisage a repeat of that sort of margin I can see a double digit home win.
Bet: 2.5 of 5 units Ireland -9.5 points at 9/10 with BetWay
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