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SportSix Nations 2024: Scotland visit Ireland, England travel to France and Wales...

Six Nations 2024: Scotland visit Ireland, England travel to France and Wales host Italy – preview, how to watch and predictions

After England’s thrilling last-gasp win over Ireland at Twickenham, the final round of matches in the Six Nations 2024 are being billed as ‘Super Saturday’.

Ireland top the standings on 16 points, four ahead of England, who are a point above Scotland and France.

Wales will have a final chance to avoid finishing bottom when they host Italy, who are four points above them, in the first game of the weekend – a fate they would already have been condemned to had a late Azzurri penalty not struck a post against France.

Reigning champions Ireland are then at home to Scotland, giving Andy Farrell’s side the opportunity to take the title after their hopes of successive Grand Slam wins evaporated in their 23-22 defeat against England.

That result will define how much France and England can achieve when the final game begins at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais.

There is every chance that the bonus-point system, which was introduced in 2017, could come into play, awarding an extra point to teams who score four tries or lose by seven or fewer points.

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Wales v Italy (Saturday, 1415)

Youthful Wales have shown encouraging signs during their campaign but ending the Six Nations with five defeats would give Warren Gatland’s squad nothing to show for their efforts.

Wales were 24-23 ahead against France on Saturday before appearing to be outmuscled during the closing stages on their way to a 45-24 defeat.

Tommy Reffell is a doubt with a knee injury he sustained during that game and George North could return, potentially alongside Owen Watkin, who impressed at 12.

Inspired by captain Michele Lamaro, Italy won at home in the championship for the first time in 11 years with a 31-29 victory over Scotland on Saturday, helped by the visitors conceding 12 penalties.

The underdogs also secured a 13-13 draw in France in their last game on the road, which should give them ample confidence at the Principality Stadium.

A bonus-point win would give Italy a chance of recording their best ever Six Nations performance by finishing third, although that would require Scotland and France to stumble.

Ireland v Scotland (Saturday, 1645)

Marcus Smith’s memorable last kick of the game at Twickenham showed Scotland that Ireland are less invincible than many observers had assumed.

Gregor Townsend’s players are likely to be bristling to prove themselves after their upset against Italy – but Ireland, too, could be a wounded and fierce animal after their unexpected setback.

“They’ve got strength throughout their team,” said Scotland flanker Andy Christie. “Everyone waxes lyrical about their system and how well they play together. It is not just their back-row – we need to look at their threats all over the pitch.

“We hope to get a full 80-minute performance and that’s exactly what we’ll need.”

While Ireland are considerable favourites and on the brink of another title, Scotland’s prospects of glory depend on a win with a points difference swing of 77 and other results going their way.

Victory would also earn Scotland the Triple Crown for the first time since 1990.

France v England (Saturday, 2000)

France have the form in a must-win game for the two teams in Lyon, winning the last two editions of the future, most recently in a 53-10 mauling at Twickenham in 2023.

Immanuel Feyi-Waboso is out with a head knock as the visitors look to build on arguably their best performance under Steve Borthwick.

“We’ve come off of a great win and we’ve probably not had this experience since we played South Africa in the [2023 World Cup] semi-final,” said flanker Ben Earl.

“It’s about leaning on those experiences and I think that’s the value of having such experienced players in the squad.”

England (23%) and France (22%) have the highest tackle evasion rates of any teams in this year’s Six Nations.

How to watch

Every game of the Six Nations will be shown by either the BBC or ITV in the UK. Wales v Italy is on BBC One, while the latter two fixtures are on ITV1.

Online viewers can watch on the BBC Sport website and BBC iPlayer or ITV.com and ITVX.

Predictions

With top spot on the line, the chances of Scotland securing a huge upset in Dublin look even slimmer. Expect Ireland to return to winning ways on a less breathtaking afternoon than their contest with England provided.

France are hefty favourites to beat England and both sides will want to stake a claim as the lead challengers to Ireland in the next edition of the Six Nations. Les Bleus should find it tougher to overwhelm England than they did Wales, perhaps winning this one narrowly.

Almost exactly two years after Italy won 22-21 on their last trip to Cardiff, Wales should dodge a whitewash and ensure a successful send-off for North, who surprisingly announced this week that the game will be his last Test.

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