Wales host Ireland in the final round of the 2019 Six Nations in Cardiff on Saturday and the home side are on the verge of the title and a Grand Slam.
Wales v Ireland, Saturday 16th March, Cardiff, KO 16:45 (South African time)
Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant Referees: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand), Karl Dickson (England)
TMO: Marius Jonker (South Africa)
Weather Forecast: N/A indoor arena
R1 Paris France 19-24 Wales (Tries 2-3)
R2 Rome Italy 15-26 Wales (Tries 2-2)
R3 Cardiff Wales 21-13 England (Tries 2-1)
R4 Edinburgh Scotland 11-18 Wales (Tries 1-2 )
Wales took another step towards the Grand Slam with victory in Scotland in Round 4 and they now return to Cardiff looking to seal the deal. Only 1 of their 4 earlier matches was a home fixture but it was probably the most significant of their results and they turned a previously impressive England side over 21-13.
Wales come into the final round of matches just 1 point clear of England and 2 better off than Ireland but any sort of victory would earn additional Grand Slam points and seal their first Six Nations title since 2013 and their first Grand Slam since 2012.
R1 Dublin Ireland 20–32 England (Tries 2-4)
R2 Edinburgh Scotland 13-22 Ireland (Tries 1-3)
R3 Rome Italy 16-26 Ireland (Tries 2-4)
R4 Dublin Ireland 26-14 France (Tries 4-2)
Ireland are still just about in contention themselves but they would need to win here and hope England fluff their lines at home to Scotland later in the day. Their opening round defeat at home to England could still prove expensive even if they manage to beat Wales in this match.
Looking at Ireland’s result’s in Scotland and in Italy they are very similar to the margins Wales achieved but the Irish have picked up a couple of bonus points in Italy and at home to France and hence they are right on the heels of their opponents here.
Wales: 15 Liam Williams, 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Josh Adams, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Gareth Davies, 8 Ross Moriarty, 7 Justin Tipuric, 6 Josh Navidi, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (c), 4 Adam Beard, 3 Tomas Francis, 2 Ken Owens, 1 Rob Evans
Replacements: 16 Elliot Dee, 17 Nicky Smith, 18 Dillon Lewis, 19 Jake Ball, 20 Aaron Wainwright, 21 Aled Davies, 22 Dan Biggar, 23 Owen Watkin
Ireland: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Keith Earls, 13 Garry Ringrose, 12 Bundee Aki, 11 Jacob Stockdale, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Conor Murray, 8 CJ Stander, 7 Sean O’Brien, 6 Peter O’Mahony, 5 James Ryan, 4 Tadhg Beirne, 3 Tadhg Furlong, 2 Rory Best (c), 1 Cian Healy
Replacements: 16 Niall Scannell, 17 Dave Kilcoyne, 18 Andrew Porter, 19 Quinn Roux, 20 Jack Conan, 21 Kieran Marmion, 22 Jack Carty, 23 Jordan Larmour
6N & RWC Head to Head (any venue)
2018 6N Dublin Ireland 37-27 Wales (Tries 5-3)
2017 6N Cardiff Wales 22-9 Ireland (Tries 3-0)
2016 6N Dublin Ireland 16-16 Wales (Tries 1-1)
2015 6N Cardiff Wales 23-16 Ireland (Tries 1-1)
2014 6N Dublin Ireland 26-3 Wales (Tries (2-0)
2013 6N Cardiff Wales 22-30 Ireland (Tries 3-3)
2012 6N Dublin Ireland 21-23 Wales (Tries (2-3)
2011 RWC Wellington Ireland 10-22 Wales (Tries 1-3)
2011 6N Cardiff Wales 19-13 Ireland (Tries 1-1)
Note, odds quoted are correct at the time of last update but are subject to change.
This is the 6 Nations swansong for coach Gatland and his team have done him proud in manoeuvring themselves into a position to land the Grand Slam. With Ireland also in contention in addition to gradually putting their Round 1 defeat to England behind them it promises to be gripping stuff any my preference is for Wales, with home advantage and the belief taken from the home win over England, the big factors
Bet: 3 units Wales to win at 17/20
(Unit Scale 1 to 5)
Remember you can have your own say on all this week’s matches on our discussion forum