Ireland win Six Nations: How Joe Schmidt's side claimed the title

Johnny Sexton in action against Finn Russell during the 2015 clash in Murrayfield

Johnny Sexton in action against Finn Russell during the 2015 clash in Murrayfield

John Barclay admits Brian O'Driscoll was spot on by claiming Scotland's can not be considered genuine NatWest 6 Nations title contenders until they find a cure for their travel sickness.

By the time winger Blair Kinghorn claimed Scotland's sole try, Ireland had three, two to wing Jacob Stockdale.

Wales lost for the second time, but the vagaries of the bonus point system leave them with an outside chance of the championship if other results go the right way for them.

France were awarded a penalty try early in the second-half, a converted Jonny May try for England making for a frenetic finish before Lionel Beauxis landed a late penalty to wrap the game up. With an very bad record away from home, the Scots' own championship bid was nearly inevitably squashed by an Irish side which owns the visitors in Dublin, where Scotland has won only once in 20 years.

Ireland are the 2018 Six Nations champions a week early after England failed to win in Paris.

Victory over Joe Schmidt's team would not only kill off doubts over the Scots' capabilities but also fire them right into the Championship mix.

"If the game loves us then we might have won against France, but we didn't get the bounce of the ball, we didn't get the 50/50 decisions and we are in the losers' chair and it is not a very happy place".

Blair Kinghorn's try did narrow the lead to 21-8 in the 51st minute, but Ireland were simply more clinical, and there was a sense of elation when a lineout move in the corner resulted in Cronin, nearly on his knees, going over.

Machenaud made it 19-9 with his fourth penalty kick in the 63rd minute after England conceded for holding on.

Ireland punted to the corner, drove the lineout and Murray sniped over the line.

However after loses to Scotland and now France, the possibility of three in a row is now a real possibility.

"We'll have to look how we can be more clinical", stand-in captain Farrell said.

Ireland blamed the bus arriving at Murrayfield 15 minutes late on their 27-22 loss to Scotland a year ago - and captain Best insisted his side have learned the hard way how to clear unforeseen hurdles.

Jones, who has now led England to 24 victories in 27 matches since taking over after the 2015 Rugby World Cup, added: "Any team that's developing goes through a period where the game doesn't like you".

If the French forwards boss the breakdown than England could be in for a torrid afternoon at the Stade de France. But there was a lot of energy and a lot of will from the players. "We didn't take the opportunity to score points", the Australian said.

A day that ended so joyously for the Irish had begun nervously as Scotland, buoyed by a victory over England last time out, matched their hosts for much of a high-tempo first half.

Latest News