England have won the Six Nations following France's 35-27 victory over Ireland in the final game of the tournament in Paris on Saturday.

Ben Youngs says it is an exciting time to play for England after starring on his 100th appearance in Saturday's Six Nations win over Italy.

The scrum-half scored two tries to help Eddie Jones' men to a 34-5 victory in Rome that kept alive their hopes of winning the championship prior to France's showdown with Ireland.

Youngs opened the scoring and was instrumental in a strong second-half display by the Red Rose, who held an uncomfortable 10-5 half-time lead after losing debutant Jonny Hill to a yellow card for a high tackle.

While their display in the first 40 minutes looked rusty, England were much improved after half-time as Youngs, Jamie George, Tom Curry and Henry Slade all scored to secure a bonus-point triumph.

It was a 21st Six Nations win over Italy in a row for England, with Youngs now on four career tries against the Azzurri, twice as many as he has against any other nation.

The Leicester Tigers man is already looking to the future, though, after becoming just the second man after Jason Leonard (114) to reach a century of England caps.

"I didn't want to build up to it too much during the week," he told ITV. "I wanted to focus on the process of playing – that was the most important thing for us, coming here and doing a job.

"I'll certainly reflect on it now with the boys and trying to absorb what the achievement is.

"I'm obviously very proud but the most important thing for me was to play my part in this team.

"We've got to keep going. It's a nice milestone but I've got the desire to kick on with these boys and all these young caps coming in, it's an exciting time to be part of it."

Looking back at England's difficult first half, he said: "We started the game well, at the start... I thought we went at them. But there was a large chunk of the first half when we couldn't get our hands on the ball, and we couldn't get our game on the field, but that's what international rugby is like sometimes.

"We went in at half-time and we got the job done in the end.

"We spoke about it being a grinding-down process. We were camped on our own line; maybe that yellow card shook us up a little bit. We got there in the end."

Ben Youngs celebrated his 100th cap with a double as England gave themselves a great chance of winning the Six Nations by securing a bonus-point 34-5 victory over Italy.

The Red Rose only held a 10-5 half-time lead at Stadio Olimpico, but stepped it up after the break to move four points clear of Ireland at the top of the table.

Eddie Jones' side can now only watch on and hope that second-placed Ireland and France, who also have a chance of being crowned champions, fail to get the result they need to lift the trophy in the final match of the tournament later on Saturday in Paris.

Youngs opened the scoring with an early try and Owen Farrell added a penalty, but rusty England - playing their first game since the tournament was suspended in March due to the coronavirus - were pegged back by a Jake Polledri five-pointer.

Scrum-half Youngs added a classy second two minutes into the second half before Jamie George marked his 50th cap with a third try and Tom Curry secured the bonus point 14 minutes from time

Henry Slade scored England's fifth try and Farrell booted nine points as England boosted their points difference and consigned ttaly to a 27th consecutive Six Nations loss

Youngs got England off to a great start when he cruised under the posts four minutes in after taking a pass from Farrell, who added the extras and slotted over a penalty soon after.

Italy hit back, though, with Polledri bursting from midfield and finishing superbly in the corner after showing a sharp turn of foot midway through the first half.

The fired-up Azzurri applied the pressure after Red Rose debutant Jonny Hill was sin-binned for a high tackle, but were unable to capitalise on their numerical advantage and England were frustrated when they were penalised as they drove towards the line following a yellow card for Polledri.

England failed to fire in the first half, but Youngs caught Italy out again with a moment of magic just after the interval, throwing a clever dummy at the breakdown and shrugging off a tackle before dotting down for a double.

George applied the finish when Italy were unable to stop a driving maul following a lineout and Curry showed great awareness to dart down the left touchline and touch down for the bonus point.

Ben Earl set up Slade for a simple score after getting on the end of Farrell's grubber kick as Italy ran out of steam and England piled the pressure on Ireland and France.

Scotland spoiled Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones' world record 149th Test appearance by ending their Six Nations campaign with a 14-10 victory on Saturday.

The inspirational Jones surpassed Richie McCaw's tally at Parc y Scarlets, but he was unable to mark the occasion with a win.

Rhys Carre scored the game's opening try for Wales when he wriggled through between the posts in the first half, with Scotland just a point behind at the break following penalties from Finn Russell and Adam Hastings.

Yet poor discipline in the scrum cost the 2019 Grand Slam winners, aa Stuart McInally pounced to score Scotland's only try and Stuart Hogg landed another penalty from the last kick of the game to seal Scotland's first Six Nations win in Wales since 2002.

Leigh Halfpenny's penalty with 15 minutes to go had set up a tense finale, but Wales finished second bottom of the table after a fourth loss in five Six Nations matches.

Scotland hit the front inside 10 minutes, as Russell converted after Ryan Elias was penalised for offside.

Chris Harris should have taken in Hogg's pass in the 20th minute, but a fumble from Scotland's number 13 allowed Dan Biggar to intervene.

Scotland were made to pay just after the half-hour. With the wind causing havoc at lineouts, Elias nipped in to steal possession, and Carre bundled his way over under the sticks – Biggar adding the extras.

An injury to Russell compounded Scotland's frustration, though a penalty from his replacement Hastings reduced the deficit to one point at the break.

A collapsing Wales scrum gave Scotland a golden opportunity with 20 minutes remaining and Gregor Townsend's side swiftly capitalised – McInally grounding on the back of a driving maul.

Hastings' failed conversion handed Wales a reprieve, with Halfpenny kicking them to within a point, but Hogg put the icing on the cake right at the end as Scotland won a third successive Six Nations match for the first time since 1996

Work to do for Pivac

Wales have now lost their last five matches, including three at the start of the Six Nations earlier in the year, and their defeat to France last time out.

The 2019 World Cup semi-finalists put in a disappointing defence of their title and having replaced Warren Gatland, Wayne Pivac will be searching for some much-improved displays from his side in the upcoming Autumn Nations Cup.

Russell's comeback ends early

Fly-half Russell missed the Six Nations games in February and March due to a breach of team protocol, but was recalled to Scotland's squad for this match and the Autumn Nations Cup.

However, his comeback lasted just 32 minutes, with Russell sustaining in an injury while trying to prevent Carre's try, and Scotland will be hoping he is fit to return in two weeks' time.

What's next?

Scotland are set to face Italy in the Autumn Nations Cup on November 14, a day after Wales go up against Ireland.

Sam Cane is excited by what the future could hold for New Zealand after they dished out a record-breaking hammering of Australia to retain their firm grip on the Bledisloe Cup.

The All Blacks hammered their trans-Tasman rivals by the biggest ever margin at ANZ Stadium on Sunday, starting the Tri Nations series with an emphatic six-try drubbing.

Richie Mo'unga scored a first-half double and finished with 23 points in a victory for Ian Foster's side that gave them a 2-0 lead over the Wallabies with one Bledisloe Cup match to play,

New Zealand have not lost a Bledisloe Cup series since 2002 and captain Cane believes there is more to come from his side after a brutal demolition of Australia.

The flanker said: "It's a pretty happy changing room in there at the moment … just filled her [the trophy] up. The trophy is really important to us, and we care a lot about it.

"I'm just so proud of the work we’ve put in over the last five-six weeks building up to this moment. It feels like we’ve improved every single week and I'm really excited about where this group can go.

"They're a tough side. There will be areas they'll be happy with and there will be areas they're not. One thing I've always admired about the Aussies is the way they pick themselves up. They'll turn up again next week with a similar confidence and attitude.

"But we'll enjoy tonight, and all the hard work that’s gone into getting us here, then decompress tomorrow, and we go again for next week. I’m pretty excited about where this team can go because I think we’ve improved steadily every week."

Head coach Foster echoed his skipper's sentiments.

He said: "It was the patience we showed tactically. Sometimes when you get out early you can loosen up a lot but I thought in that second quarter we stuck to what was working.

"We saw space and we took it. There was some nice instinctiveness about it, too. We're building something here."

New Zealand recorded their biggest winning margin over Australia as a 43-5 thrashing secured another Bledisloe Cup series triumph and a fine start to the Tri Nations.

The All Blacks suffered a chastening 47-26 loss in their previous match on Australian soil last August, but ensured there was no repeat in Sydney as they followed up their 27-7 Eden Park victory earlier this month in style.

Karl Tu'inukuafe, Richie Mo'unga (2) and Dane Coles touched down in the first half at ANZ Stadium, where a socially distanced crowd witnessed a masterclass from Ian Foster's side.

Debutant Noah Lolesio hit back in a much-improved second-half showing from Australia, but New Zealand rarely looked anything other than comfortable and added gloss through Rieko Ioane and Jordie Barrett, with Mo'unga's conversion earning his country a slice of history.

With the Bledisloe Cup now beyond their grasp, Dave Rennie's men will look to bounce back against the same opponents in Brisbane next week to kickstart their Tri Nations campaign.

The Wallabies endured an early setback, Filipo Daugunu seeing yellow for a dangerous tackle on the airborne Caleb Clarke.

Foster's charges initially capitalised as Tu'inukuafe crashed over for his first international try, but Jordie Barrett soon followed fellow number 14 Daugunu into the sin bin for leading with his forearm on Dane Haylett-Petty.

The visitors had two tries ruled out by the TMO, one for grounding and the other for being in touch, before Mo'unga's brace of fine solo scores eased their frustrations.

Coles, earlier denied by the TMO, drove over from a lineout to effectively put the game to bed before the break.

Australia got off the mark a minute after the interval as Lolesio seized on a sharp pass inside to dart over the line, though the All Blacks soon reasserted their authority to seal a record win over their rivals.

Mo'unga kicked a penalty and added the extras to tries from Ioane and Barrett, the second of those conversions ensuring New Zealand's 43-6 win over Australia in 1996 was eclipsed.

Alun Wyn Jones will become the most capped player in Test history on Saturday and the legendary Wales captain's record against Scotland suggests he will be celebrating with a win.

Jones will break new ground at Parc y Scarlets when he wins a 149th international cap, surpassing New Zealand great Richie McCaw's tally.

The talismanic lock's appearance on the final day of the Six Nations will be his 140th for Wales and he has played nine times for the British and Irish Lions in a stellar career.

A fierce competitor and inspirational leader, the 35-year-old made his Wales debut against Argentina in June and has gone on to become one of the all-time greats.

With the use of Opta data, we reflect on Jones' Test career so far as he prepares to break the world record on home soil.



The towering back-row has faced 18 different countries over the years and beaten them all at least once.

He has more Test wins over Scotland than any other country, which bodes well for this weekend, with 10 triumphs in 12 contests.

England are the opponents Jones has faced the most, starting all 21 times against the Red Rose – losing 12 and winning nine.

He does not have fond memories of New Zealand, beating the All Blacks just once in 15 Tests.



His Lions selections over the last 11 years are all the evidence you need of Jones' incredible durability and consistency.

He has played all nine Lions Tests since 2009, starting seven and coming off the bench twice. No other player has featured in more than six in that time.

Jones stepped in to captain the side in the series-clinching victory over Australia in 2013 and started all three Tests in the drawn series with New Zealand three years ago.

He will be hoping to get the nod for a fourth tour under Warren Gatland next year, when the Lions are due to face South Africa 12 years after Jones was selected for the representational side to travel to the same country.



Sam Warburton is the only player to have captained Wales more often than Jones.

Ospreys great Jones has been skipper on 37 occasions, with Warburton leading his country 49 times before retiring two years ago.

Ryan Jones (33) is third on the list, with Ieuan Evans (28) and Colin Charvis (22) making up the top five.



Gatland was a great success in his 12-year reign as Wales head coach and Jones played a big hand in that.

He made 116 appearances during the New Zealander's long tenure, winning 62 of those matches.

Wales won four Six Nations titles and three Grand Slams with Gatland at the helm and Jones was the only player to make 100 or more appearances during his time in charge.

The battle for the Six Nations title is finally set to come to a thrilling climax on Saturday.

Ireland have their fate in their own hands after they hammered Italy last weekend in the only round four match that could not take place before the tournament was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic in March.

If Andy Farrell's side secure a bonus-point win over France in the final match of the competition in Paris they will get their hands on the trophy, but Les Bleus are also in contention.

England are the favourites to be crowned champions, as they trail leaders Ireland by only a point and will be expected to seal a bonus-point victory over Italy in Rome.

Scotland and Wales, who sit fourth and fifth respectively, end their campaigns with a clash at Parc y Scarlets.

Ahead of what promises to be a tense finale to the tournament, we use Opta data to preview the three matches.


Wales v Scotland

- Wales have won 14 of their last 16 Six Nations games against Scotland (L2), including their last eight in a row on home soil, with Scotland's only victory in Wales in the championship coming in 2002.

- Scotland come into the match having won back-to-back games in the Six Nations. They have not won three in a row in the Five/Six Nations since 1996 - when they beat Ireland, France and Wales in succession.

- Wales have lost their last three Six Nations games, their worst run in the championship since a five-game losing streak spanning the 2006 and 2007 editions.

- Scotland's Stuart Hogg has carried the ball for 377 metres in this Six Nations, more than any other player. No player has made more metres over the gain line than Hogg - with Jacob Stockdale also making 305m.

Italy v England

- England have won all of their 26 matches against Italy, 20 of those coming in the Six Nations. The Red Rose are the only side the Italians have failed to beat since joining the championship in 2000.

- Italy have lost 26 consecutive games in the Six Nations since beating Scotland in 2015, the longest losing run by any side in history of the tournament. Only twice during that run have they been beaten by a single-figure margin (v France 2016, v Scotland 2018).

- England have scored four or more tries in each of their last six Six Nations matches against Italy, with an average winning margin of 33 points across those six victories.

- After defeat to Ireland last weekend, Italy are assured of a 15th wooden spoon and a fifth in a row.

France v Ireland

- France have won just one of their last eight games against Ireland in the Six Nations (D2, L5). They had won seven of their previous eight clashes in the championship before that run (L1).

- The last four Six Nations meetings between France and Ireland in Paris have seen the sides separated by fewer than three points (France W1, Ireland W2, D1).

- France have won their last three home games in the Six Nations, their best run since 2013-14 (W3). The last time they enjoyed a longer winning streak on home soil in the competition was a nine-game run stretching from 2008 to 2012.

- Les Bleus are yet to lose a scrum in the 2020 Six Nations, winning all 14 on their own feed, the only side with a 100 per cent success rate at that set-piece.

New Zealand will look to wrap up another Bledisloe Cup series triumph and make a strong start to the Tri Nations when they face fierce rivals Australia in Sydney on Saturday.

The All Blacks cruised to a 27-7 victory over the Wallabies at Eden Park to take a 1-0 lead after the first match ended in a 16-16 draw.

New Zealand have dominated the rivalry in recent times, and you have to go back to 2002 for the last time their trans-Tasman rivals lifted the famous trophy.

While Australia are unable to end that wait this weekend, they could draw first blood in the opening Tri Nations Test and set up a Bledisloe Cup decider next week in Brisbane.

South Africa's withdrawal from the Rugby Championship leaves just Australia, New Zealand and Argentina to battle it out in a rebranded Tri Nations.

With the Pumas having to wait until November 14 for their opening contest with the All Blacks, we use Opta facts to preview another almighty battle at ANZ Stadium.

Australia v New Zealand

- New Zealand have lost only one of their last seven Tests against Australia (W5, D1); however, that single defeat did come in their last meeting on Australian soil, going down 47-26 in Perth last August.

- The All Blacks have won seven of the most recent nine Tests between the two sides at ANZ Stadium, including their last three. They have averaged 44.67 points per game in that three-match run.

- Australia have won four of their last five Tests at home, losing one. They have been victorious in the last three and the last time they enjoyed a longer winning run on home soil was a four-match span from September 2013 to June 2014.

- New Zealand have scored 70 tries at ANZ Stadium, their second-most at any Test ground outside New Zealand. They need two more to surpass their tally of 71 at the SCG.

- Marika Koroibete has scored 13 tries since making his Test debut in September 2017, the most of any Australia player in that time; New Zealand's Rieko Ioane (18) and South Africa's Makazole Mapimpi (14) are the only southern hemisphere tier one players with more in that period.

- Beauden Barrett needs one more try for the outright record of most in Tests against Australia by any player. He is currently level on 11 with Richie McCaw and Ma'a Nonu and has blanked in his last two Tests against the Wallabies.

Legendary Wales wing JJ Williams has died at the age of 72.

Williams was a star wing of the Wales sides of the 1970s, scoring 12 tries in 30 Tests between 1973 and 1979.

A sprinter who competed at the 1970 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh, he was then part of the Welsh sides that won four Five Nations titles, including two Grand Slams.

Williams also made seven Test appearances for the Lions in tours to South Africa in 1974 and New Zealand in 1977.

During the former, he scored two tries in as many Tests against the Springboks and a record-equalling six in a 97-0 rout of South West Districts.

The clinical flyer sits third on the all-time list of Lions try-scorers with 22 in 26 games.

Williams leaves wife Jane and children Kathryn, James and Rhys, the former European champion and Commonwealth Games silver medallist in the 400metre hurdles.

Wales players will wear black armbands in Saturday's Six Nations match with Scotland in Llanelli, where Williams spent much of his club career.

Head coach Wayne Pivac said: "On behalf of the national squad, management and team, our thoughts and condolences go out to JJ's family and friends.

"It always is poignant when you have a player of that ilk passing away. We'll show our respects by wearing the black armbands."

Alun Wyn Jones is set to become the most-capped player in Test rugby when Wales conclude their Six Nations campaign against Scotland on Saturday.

Wales captain Jones will break the record set by New Zealand great Richie McCaw when he makes his 149th appearance at Parc y Scarlets this weekend.

The 35-year-old lock made his international debut in 2006 and has featured in 139 Tests for Wales and nine with the British and Irish Lions.

Head coach Wayne Pivac said: "It's a fantastic day for Alun Wyn, isn't it. What can you say? We don't have enough time to talk about the guy. Just a tremendous leader in this group, leads by example.

"When he speaks, everyone listens. He's always matter of fact, to the point. Just a fantastic guy to have in our environment and I'm so pleased he's going to be able to do that.

"He's had to wait longer than we anticipated with the summer tour [called] off, but certainly to do it in a Six Nations match will be special for him."

Jones will be joined in the second row against Wales by Will Rowlands, who was handed a first Wales start by Pivac as one of six changes that also saw debutant Shane Lewis-Hughes and Tomas Francis named among the forwards.

George North makes way for Liam Williams on the wing and drops out of the 23-man squad, while Gareth Davies starts at scrum-half due to Rhys Webb's injury and Owen Watkin returns at centre.


Wales: Leigh Halfpenny, Liam Williams, Jonathan Davies, Owen Watkin, Josh Adams, Dan Biggar, Gareth Davies; Rhys Carre, Ryan Elias, Tomas Francis, Will Rowlands, Alun Wyn Jones, Shane Lewis-Hughes, Justin Tipuric, Taulupe Faletau.

Replacements: Sam Parry, Wyn Jones, Dillon Lewis, Cory Hill, James Davies, Lloyd Williams, Rhys Patchell, Nick Tompkins.

Alex Mitchell has replaced injured scrum-half Willi Heinz for title-chasing England's final match of the Six Nations against Italy on Saturday. 

Heinz has been ruled out of the clash due to a leg soft tissue injury, so Eddie Jones has called up uncapped Northampton Saints pivot Mitchell to provide cover. 

Jones also has experienced scrum-halves Ben Youngs and Dan Robson in his squad for the showdown in Rome. 

England go into the match knowing a bonus-point victory could see them crowned champions, depending on the outcome of the huge final-day battle between France and leaders Ireland in Paris. 

The Red Rose have won all 26 matches against Italy in the tournament, scoring at least four tries - which they need for a bonus-point win - in their last six meetings with the Azzurri.

Defence coach John Mitchell wants to see England set the tone in the opening stages of what will be their first match since the tournament was halted in March due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

He said: "Firstly, our goal is to win this Six Nations. We'll need to set the tone right at the start and we'll also need to be at our best. 

"If we keep that focus and maintain that intent and are very good, then we'll give ourselves a very good opportunity. 

"It's an opportunity for us to put smiles on faces during a really tough time in the country – that might sound generic because you might be hearing that from all sportsmen but that time has arrived for us, and that’s really important to us." 

Meanwhile, flanker Tom Curry says the competition for places in the squad is pushing him to take his game to another level. 

He said: "In life there is stuff that you can't effect whatsoever. Obviously as rugby players you want to be playing, but sometimes that’s not the case and especially at this time. 

"I think the brilliant things about this situation is how adaptable you can be and how you can still look to get better. I think from a personal point, I feel in a really good place."

Robbie Henshaw has replaced Garry Ringrose as Ireland's only change for Saturday's decisive Six Nations clash with France in Paris.

Leinster centre Ringrose broke his jaw early in last weekend's 50-17 hammering of Italy after being caught by Edoardo Padovani's knee and will miss the next six weeks.

Fellow Leinster player Henshaw came on for Ringrose at the Aviva Stadium and will now start the crucial clash with France at the Stade de France.

Ireland head into their final match of the elongated tournament knowing that a bonus-point victory will secure a fourth title in seven years.

As a result of Henshaw dropping out of the squad, Chris Farrell has been drafted into the Ireland replacements.

Prop Cian Healy is set to win his 100th cap and Johnny Sexton will once again captain Ireland, who are a point ahead of England – whose final game is against Italy in Rome – and opponents France.


Ireland: Jacob Stockdale, Andrew Conway, Robbie Henshaw, Bundee Aki, Hugo Keenan, Johnny Sexton (c), Conor Murray; Cian Healy, Rob Herring, Andrew Porter, Tadhg Beirne, James Ryan, Caelan Doris, Will Connors, CJ Stander.

Replacements: Dave Heffernan, Ed Byrne, Finlay Bealham, Ultan Dillane, Peter O'Mahony, Jamison Gibson-Park, Ross Byrne, Chris Farrell.

John Cooney has been called up to the Ireland squad for the decisive Six Nations clash with France on Saturday as cover for Jamison Gibson-Park.

Gibson-Park reported he is suffering from hamstring tightness after the 50-17 demolition of Italy at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.

Cooney was left out for that match in Dublin after being on the bench for the defeat to England in February before the tournament was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Ulster scrum-half has been drafted in by Andy Farrell ahead of a showdown with Les Bleus in Paris which Ireland start knowing a bonus-point win would secure the title.

Wing Keith Earls is finishing his rehabilitation programme from a back injury and a decision over whether he can face France will be made in the coming days.

Centre Garry Ringrose is out for up to six weeks after suffering a broken jaw in the hammering of the Azzurri.

England trail Ireland by a point but are favourites to be crowned champions as they face Italy in Rome.

Ireland will be without Garry Ringrose for their decisive Six Nations showdown with France after the centre was ruled out for up to six weeks with a broken jaw. 

Ringrose was caught in the face by Edoardo Padovani's knee early in the 50-17 hammering of Italy when the Six Nations resumed at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday. 

The Leinster player, who was replaced by Robbie Henshaw, will miss the trip to Paris for a final match of the tournament that Ireland will start needing another bonus-point win to secure the title. 

Ireland head coach Andy Farrell said: "Garry Ringrose has broken his jaw, so bad news for us all. 

"He's been so good for us the last 10 days, he has been absolutely fantastic with his leadership and he was a big part of the reason why we got what we wanted [versus Italy]. 

"He was unfortunate with his thumb injury earlier in the Six Nations and has come back and had a setback like that which will keep him out for four to six weeks, so we're gutted for Garry."

Ringrose also looks set to sit out the Autumn Nations Cup encounters with Wales, England and Georgia in November. 

Ireland are a point ahead of France and England - who play Italy in Rome - ahead of the final round of Six Nations matches.

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