Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: Six Nations: Ireland vs Scotland Preview

Six Nations: Ireland vs Scotland Preview

Players attempt to score a try

Scotland are ready to carry on their winning momentum when they face a mammoth task at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday the 10th of March.

The matchup of the weekend pits would-be Grand Slammers Ireland against England-slayers Scotland in Dublin on Saturday. Following the events of a fortnight ago, the ball is very much in Ireland’s court regarding their potentially claiming the 2018 title undefeated.

This weekend they entertain the men that afforded them such a position after the Scots’ win over the defending champions and will know that another victory this week will see them within a whisker of another title triumph.

Ireland v Scotland
10 March 16h15
Aviva Stadium, Dublin

To Win (80 Mins)
Ireland 3/10
Draw 25/1
Scotland 24/10

Ireland 9/10 (-8.5)
Scotland 9/10 (+8.5)

Boy oh boy, hasn’t the anticipation surrounding the Irish this week been positively palpable? Despite the fact that another win this weekend would break Ireland’s all-time record of consecutive games-won (this would be their 11th-straight success), but it would also serve as another hammer blow to English hopes, who will kick-off their encounter with France but a few hours later. A Grand Slam is well within reach of Joe Schmidt’s men, and a slip-up at the penultimate hurdle will be nothing short of devastating.

Although, perhaps “slip-up” isn’t giving Scotland enough credit. Indeed, they proved in their victory over England just how good they can be, and it is not beyond the realms of belief that they could claim another almighty scalp this weekend. Ireland have been their usual fantastic selves this campaign, but Saturday’s clash will represent their toughest yet.

Scotland are a side that are never afraid to move the ball wide, and this may certainly be an area that Ireland will look to target this weekend. With Schmidt’s astute footballing brain driving them off the field, as well as the likes of Connor Murray and Johnny Sexton leading the charge on it, I’m banking on Irish Grand Slam dreams living on at the conclusion of Saturday’s proceedings.

For all of Joe Schmidt’s tactical genius, Scotland boss Gregor Townsend isn’t too shabby himself. The 44-year-old is a wily old rugga bugga too, and the part he played in his side’s dismantling of England was absolutely immense. His strategy of attacking England’s undermanned breakdown worked wonders and the tactics he employs ahead of this weekend’s crunch clash will doubtless be just as inventive.

Hypothetically, Scotland can still be crowned Six Nations champions on 17 March, they’d just have to rely on an awful lot going their way in the interim. Realistically, they will probably be aiming for a second-place finish and will give themselves a great shot at doing so with a win here. The likes of John Barclay and Hamish Watson did incredible work at the breakdown in Round Three, and they will surely have crucial roles to play if they are to claim another unlikely victory on Saturday.

Verdict: Ireland 3/10
With experience, talent and location working in their favour, Ireland should come out of another Six Nations weekend relatively unscathed to set themselves up for a potential Grand Slam on St Patrick’s Day.

Written by Shaun Goosen for @Hollywoodbets.net

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