Monday 24 September 2018

What time, what channel and what's at stake? Seven things to know about Ireland v Scotland

Jonathan Sexton, right, and Rory Best
Jonathan Sexton, right, and Rory Best

Ireland could be crowned Six Nations champions by this afternoon.

Here is everything you need to know about the clash against Scotland at the Aviva Stadium.

How can Ireland win the Six Nations?

Ireland could be crowned Six Nations champions tonight if they can beat Scotland and better England's result.

Five points clear of the holders after three games, Joe Schmidt's side host the third-placed Scots at 2.15, with England away to France at 4.45. That gives Ireland an opportunity to lay down the gauntlet to the champions, who they face at Twickenham next week, and put the Scots out of the running.

If the home side can manage a four-try bonus-point win then England must achieve the same to have any hope of salvaging their crown at home next week. Ireland have a points differential of +49 compared to England's +25, while Scotland are on -9 but will hope to put on a big score in Rome next week.

What are the TV details?

Ireland's match with Scotland is live on TV3 with coverage starting at 1pm and kick off at 2.15.

TV3 will also bring you live coverage of England's match away to France with kick off at 4.45pm.

You can follow both matches on Independent.ie's live blog.  

What are the teams?

IRELAND: R Kearney; K Earls, G Ringrose, B Aki, J Stockdale; J Sexton, C Murray; C Healy, R Best (capt), T Furlong; J Ryan, D Toner; P O’Mahony, D Leavy, CJ Stander. Reps: S Cronin, J McGrath, A Porter, I Henderson, J Murphy, K Marmion, J Carbery, J Larmour.

Replacements: Seán Cronin, Jack McGrath, Andrew Porter, Iain Henderson, Jordi Murphy, Kieran Marmion, Joey Carbery, Jordan Larmour.

SCOTLAND: 15-Stuart Hogg, 14-Blair Kinghorn, 13-Huw Jones, 12-Pete Horne, 11-Sean Maitland, 10-Finn Russell, 9-Greig Laidlaw, 8-Ryan Wilson, 7-Hamish Watson, 6-John Barclay (captain), 5-Jonny Gray, 4-Grant Gilchrist, 3-Simon Berghan, 2-Stuart McInally, 1-Gordon Reid

Replacements: 16-Fraser Brown, 17-Jamie Bhatti, 18-WP Nel, 19-Tim Swinson, 20-David Denton, 21-Ali Price, 22-Nick Grigg, 23-Lee Jones.

What are the odds?

Ireland: 2/9

Scotland: 16/5

Draw: 22/1

Ireland are 2/9

What are they saying?

RORY BEST

"I suppose for us with the way the Championship started, this is probably the biggest game we've faced, certainly with this group, but potentially with an Ireland team under Joe.

"Because we've put ourselves in a really strong position and now the pressure is on us to make sure that we stick by what we said and that's 'Get better every game.'

"And that's not just with our details but that's also around our physicality and around bringing a bit of emotion and controlled emotion at times, and other times just letting that emotion go."

MATT TAYLOR (Scotland defence coach on targeting Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton)

"Listen, I think their 9 and 10 are the best two players in the Ireland team.

"For us to be successful against them, we have to put them under pressure. That means charge-downs. That's what we're going to do. We'll do it within the law, like we've always done.

"Personally, I think there was a lot made of it when there was not much in it. We did everything within the laws, both last year and referring to the Glasgow game, which I was part of.

"You know, we never got penalised in that game. We never got cited. So I think it was a bit of a storm in a teacup, to be honest."

Current standings

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