Ireland vs France – Six Nations 2017 -Round 3

The Irish knew that a loss against the French meant that their hopes of winning the Six Nations would become mearly impossible. They didn’t start well, allowing Camille Lopez to hit a penalty but things nearly became even worse. Yoaan Huget collected a cross-field kick but was tackled in the nick of time by Garry Ringrose. Huget spilt the ball backwards so Gael Fickou cleaned and passed to Remi Lamerat who ran in. The try was awarded originally but Nigel Owens was called by the TMO and it was deemed that Fickou had spilt the ball (ever so slightly) in the process of picking the ball up. However, Lopez did his second penalty of the match so France were 6-0 up.

Ireland were in desperate need of a response and they got that through their star scrum half Connor Murray. The Munster man picked and went from close range while just managing to dot the ball down on the line. The returning Johnny Sexton converted and added a penalty to put Ireland 4 points to the good.

Johnny Sexton was back with a bang and when Ireland were awarded a penalty advantage on the 10-metre mark, he sat back and somehow smashed a long range drop goal straight through the uprights. He also hit another penalty.

France were beginning to tire and that showed when Simon Zebo burst through down the right. He then linked with Murray who in turn found Jamie Heaslip. Zebo continued his support and when he was offloaded the ball again, he threw a quick no look pass to the onrushing Donnacha Ryan. He took it in but was left without men to get into the ruck. France stole it and then cleared their lines. A great passage of play resulted in nothing.

Paddy Jackson did replace Sexton though and managed to get a penalty for himself to stretch the lead. France could not find a way back and it was to be an Irish win.Screen Shot 2017-02-26 at 14.38.48.png

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