England beat Italy 2024 Guinness Six Nations

2024 Six Nations: Round One Review

The first round of Six Nations matches were enthralling, and here we take a look at all of the action as all the teams got their Championship campaigns underway.

The 2024 Guinness Six Nations finally got underway last week, with the first round of matches getting underway at the Orange Velodrome where France took on reigning Champions Ireland as both look to top the standings at the end of the championship.

Elsewhere, Steve Borthwick’s England were looking to open their 2024 Championship campaign with a win against Italy. Borthwick’s seek a first Six Nations triumph since 2020, where they finished ahead of France in second place and Ireland, who ended up in third. After getting 18 points as France did, it took a bonus point against Italy on the final day, dubbed ‘Super Saturday’, to win England their 7th Six Nations title.

Finally, two rivals, Wales and Scotland, met at the Principality Stadium for the final game of the day. Gregor Townsend’s Scotland looked for a winning start to try and build on 2023’s 3rd place finish, whilst Wales were looking for a positive result as they look to improve on last year’s 5th place.

Here, we will take a look back at all three matches that took place in round one of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations. We shall start with the game that kicked off the action for this year’s Six Nations Championship, which was 2023 runners-up France taking on the reigning Champions Ireland in Marseille on Friday night.

France 17 – 38 Ireland (Friday 2nd February, Orange Velodrome)

The top two from the 2023 Six Nations went head-to-head on Friday night at the Orange Velodrome in Marseille. Andy Farrell’s Ireland is targeting a second consecutive Guinness Six Nations crown, which would be the first time that Ireland has won this competition in consecutive years since they did so in 2014 and 2015.

In the end, it was Ireland who opened their account with a win against France, beating them comfortably thanks to a 17 – 38 score line. In terms of tries, there were plenty of them. Ireland got 5, which were scored by Jamison Gibson-Park (15’), Tadhg Belrne (29’), Calvin Nash (45’), Dan Sheehan (61) and Ronan Kelleher (77’).

As for France, they got just two tries, which were scored by Damian Penaud (39’) and Paul Gabrillagues (52’). Both got one penalty each – Thomas Ramos (26’) for France and Jack Crowley for Ireland.

As for Conversions, France got 2, whilst Ireland got 5. Jack Crowley got all of Ireland’s conversions (17’, 30’, 46’, 62’, 78’), whilst Thomas Ramos got all of the conversions for Fabien Galthié’s France side (17′, 30′, 46′, 62′, 78′)

In terms of metres gained, France gained 314.1 metres compared to the visiting side’s 388.8 metres gained. Ireland was also superior in turnovers with 6, as opposed to France’s 2. Galthié’s team made more tackles, 148, compared to Farrell’s Ireland, who made 118.

This result sees Ireland sit at the top of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations standings as of the time of writing. As for France, they are having to settle for 6th place for now.

Italy 24 – 27 England (Saturday 3rd February, Stadio Olimpico)

On Saturday, it was a tighter contest between Steve Borthwick’s England and an Italy team led by Head Coach Gonzalo Quesada at the iconic Stadio Olimpico. Both nations will be looking to improve on a 4th and 6th finish in the 2023 Six Nations.

After being beaten 17 – 14 at half time, England managed to emerge as 24 – 27 winners in Rome to get their 2024 Six Nations Championship campaign off to the best possible start. Italy scored more tries with 3 compared to England’s two. Alessandro Garbisi (10’), Tommaso Allan (25’) and Monty Ioane (84’) got them for the home side, whilst it was Elliot Daly (19’) and Alex Mitchell (44’) who scored tries for Steve Borthwick’s England.

England had more conversions, though, with 5, as opposed to 1 for Quesada’s side. Tommaso Allan (4’) got the sole penalty for Italy, whilst it was George Ford who got all 5 of England’s penalties that day.

Moving on to conversions, Italy had 3, whilst England had 1. George Ford got the sole conversion for Borthwick’s England (45’), with Tommaso Allan (12’, 26’) and Paolo Garbisi (85’) getting the conversions for Quesada’s Italy.

Both England and Italy gained a similar number of metres throughout the game. England gained the most, with 347.1 metres, as opposed to 332.5 for their opponents.

This result sees England sitting in 2nd place, just behind leaders Ireland. As for Italy, they sit 5th with only France behind them at present.

Wales 26 – 27 Scotland (Saturday 3rd February, Principality Stadium)

The tightest contest of the lot in round one of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations came between rivals in the form of Warren Gatland’s Wales and Gregor Townsend’s Scotland at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff. This was the last game of round one, and both teams were hoping for the win, with Wales looking to improve on a 5th place finish in 2023, whilst Scotland look to build on a 3rd place finish last year.

It was Scotland who emerged as 26 – 27 winners – it was tight despite Townsend’s side leading 0 – 20 at the half time break. Wales edged it in terms of tries with 4 compared to Scotland’s 3. James Botham (47’), Rio Dyer (52’), Aaron Wainwright (60’), and Alex Mann (67’) scored tries for Gatland’s side, whilst it was Pierre Schoeman (10’) and Duhan van de Merwe (29’, 42’) who scored all of Scotland’s tries.

Scotland were the only side to score a penalty, with Finn Russell scoring two (5’, 22’). Both teams got three conversions – it was Ioan Lloyd for Wales (53’, 60’, 68′) and Finn Russell for Scotland (11’, 30’, 43’).

Wales gained the most metres with a total of 444.8 metres compared to their opponents, with Scotland gaining 369.6 metres overall.

With this win, Gregor Townsend’s Scotland side sit third and just behind England and Ireland. Meanwhile, Wales are just behind their rivals in 4th place, with Italy and France below them in 5th and 6th place, respectively.

Excitement and anticipation are building ahead of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations resuming on Saturday, 10th February 2024. Below are all of the Six Nations fixtures for this weekend:

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