Round 3 of Six Nations to sepa...

Sport

Round 3 of Six Nations to separate contenders from pretenders

TodayFM
TodayFM

5:22 PM - 24 Feb 2017



While Ireland and France look like playing out the most significant game of the weekend in the Six Nations, the other two matches in Edinburgh and London will further separate the contenders from the pretenders.

In Saturday's opening game, Scotland welcome Wales to Murrayfield, looking for their first win against their Celtic rivals in 10 years.

The Scots will be without their influential captain and kicker Greig Laidlaw, after the scrum half's ankle injury in their defeat to France. John Barclay has been given the captaincy in his absence.

Vern Cotter's side made the perfect start to their tournament with victory against Ireland, and impressed in spells against France at the Stade de France. However indiscipline cost them dearly in the final 10 minutes, conceding two cheap penalties which Camille Lopez slotted. Their scrum has also been a major problem in the opening two rounds.

However, at home the Scots have proved difficult to beat in the last year. They've won three in a row on their own patch, with wins against Argentina and Georgia preceding the defeat of Ireland. They also ran Australia and England close at Murrayfield in 2016, as well as beating France.

That edge at home will have Wales wary. Rob Howley's side came within a whisker of beating England a fortnight ago, and along with Ireland and France, still have slim hopes of winning the title.

However a defeat tomorrow ends any hopes of the trophy going back to Cardiff. They've been able to call on George North once again after he was a late withdrawal from the team to play England last time out. Ross Moriarty keeps Taulupe Faletau out of the team once again at number 8, after two outstanding performance so far.

On Sunday, England will be expected to continue tick another box on their journey towards a second successive title.

After being given a big scare in both of their opening games against France and Wales, Eddie Jones pulled no punches when he called on his side to give Italy "a good hiding" at Twickenham.

And after the Italians shipped 12 tries in their opening two games, the likelihood is that England will claim their first bonus point win of the tournament.

Jones is using the game to tweak his squad, with Ben Te'o, Danny Care and Jonny May coming into the backline, and James Haskell resorted to the pack.

The only hope for Conor O'Shea is that his side have done some soul-searching in the last fortnight, but even if they do front up at Twickenham this weekend, it's hard to look past England picking up maximum points. 



Read more about

Sport

You might like

Live: Title

Now playing

00:00:00 / 00:00:00
Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share

Up next

Episode title
Show
Duration

You currently have no podcasts in your queue.

Go to podcasts

On Air

Overnight

Overnight

12 AM-5 AM

Share

Up next

Early Breakfast with Paula Mac...

Early Breakfast with Paula MacSweeney

5 AM-7 AM

Share

The Ian Dempsey Breakfast Show

The Ian Dempsey Breakfast Show

7 AM-9 AM

Share

Dermot & Dave

Dermot & Dave

9 AM-12 PM

Share

Mairead Ronan

Mairead Ronan

12 PM-2 PM

Share

Fergal D'Arcy

Fergal D'Arcy

2 PM-4:30 PM

Share

The Last Word with Matt Cooper

The Last Word with Matt Cooper

4:30 PM-7 PM

Share

Ed's National Anthems

Ed's National Anthems

7 PM-10 PM

Share

The Paul McLoone Show

The Paul McLoone Show

10 PM-12 AM

Share

Overnight

Overnight

12 AM-5 AM

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on