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Who will win the Six Nations?

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Post by bsando Mon 23 Jan 2023, 7:56 am

Who will win the Guiness Six Nations 2023?

A simple thread to discuss who the likely victor will be.

How do you think the final table will look? Are Italy still the team to get the wooden spoon? Are France and Ireland the teams to beat? Will the return of Gatland and departure of Jones bring results?

Give us your predictions below

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Post by TJ Mon 23 Jan 2023, 8:22 am

France to win with a GS. wooden spoon could be any of the rest

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 23 Jan 2023, 8:34 am

Difficult given the changes in coaching and injuries at present. Given the way the fixtures fall this year i wouldn't be surprised to see Ireland get the title but not the GS. Again, the fixtures fall nicely to ease Borthwick in so wouldn't be surprised should they actually pip France to second, but you can imagine that it'll be a grind for most of the comp. Maybe something like this:

Ireland
France
England
Scotland
Wales
Italy.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 23 Jan 2023, 9:50 am

I think it's going to be difficult to call until we see the first round of matches and some of the associated selections. No one really has a clue where Wales and England are currently. We expect Ireland and France to be good whilst Scotland and Italy can pull off a result against most teams on their day.

Fingers crossed for some dry (ish) weather and should be some good games.

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Post by bsando Mon 23 Jan 2023, 10:12 am

France and Ireland are clear favourites but of the two I would bet in France to win. Ireland have so much power in their pack but their slim win over Australia in the autumn was evidence that they’re not always on their game against the more free flowing sides.

England would be my dark horse for this six nations given their squad and the inevitable boost they’ll get from fresh ideas and a new look side.

Wales, Italy Scotland will be fairly evenly matched I think and any of these three could finish fourth, fifth or last.

France
Ireland
England
Wales
Scotland
Italy

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Post by Pete330v2 Mon 23 Jan 2023, 11:39 am

Jeez it's a hard one to predict, England and Wales being such unknown quantities with new coaching setups. Of course Ireland and France will be expected to be fighting for the top spot but Scotland can beat anyone on their day and Italy are very much improved but not enough to worry the rest I would imagine.

I'm going to go against my heart (the heart says an Irish GS) with this:

France
Ireland
Wales
England
Scotland
Italy.

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Post by Oakdene Mon 23 Jan 2023, 11:40 am

bsando wrote:France and Ireland are clear favourites but of the two I would bet in France to win. Ireland have so much power in their pack but their slim win over Australia in the autumn was evidence that they’re not always on their game against the more free flowing sides.

England would be my dark horse for this six nations given their squad and the inevitable boost they’ll get from fresh ideas and a new look side.

Wales, Italy Scotland will be fairly evenly matched I think and any of these three could finish fourth, fifth or last.

France
Ireland
England
Wales
Scotland
Italy

Hasn't Borthwick only picked (because that's all he was allowed to) 5 new players from Eddies last squad?

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Post by Oakdene Mon 23 Jan 2023, 11:41 am

For me, it all depends on how we get off against Ireland first up, if we win that then we will do well as confidence will grow. Lose that &we could be going to Rome on the back of 3 defeats.

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Post by majesticimperialman Mon 23 Jan 2023, 11:56 am

I would luje it to be England,
But i think it will be France. No Grand slam this year.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Mon 23 Jan 2023, 12:04 pm

England vs Scotland will probably determine which will be favourite for third. For whatever reason, we have had a good run, however with injuries hurting both teams, England should be able to beat us.

Ireland at home against France and England is the right way round for them. Wales will exhaust themselves going after them in the first game (home, Gatland back, final Six Nations for AWJ/Faletau/Halfpenny/Biggar?) and Scotland can be dangerous, but they have so much depth and quality in the forwards, they should have enough.

Ireland
France
England
Scotland
Wales
Italy

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Post by NeilyBroon Mon 23 Jan 2023, 1:10 pm

Not Scotland is the simple answer.

France or Ireland and England as a quiet side bet. With France at home I fancy Ireland to scrape it.

Ireland
France/England (PD will determine 2nd)
Scotland (4th)
Wales
Italy



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Post by Poorfour Mon 23 Jan 2023, 2:01 pm

As ever in the 6N, the schedule plays a big part.

France
Italy A - Should be a straightforward win, for all Italy have improved
Ireland A - Quite possibly the decisive match of the tournament. Ireland at home probably have the edge but it should be a cracker
Scotland H - For all that Scotland have improved, I don't see them turning over France at home
England A - A potential banana skin. England will have had a few matches to get up to speed and will be desperate to win wherever they are in the table. Result may depend on whether France are still in contention for the title
Wales H - France can match Wales for power, so unless Gatland has evolved his tactics they should have the edge, especially at home

Feels like W4 - L1

Ireland
Wales A - Cardiff is a tough place to go, but Ireland are settled, and Gatland's teams traditionally start slowly. Ireland win
France H - probably narrowly in Ireland's favour at home
Italy A - Should be a comfortable win, even away
Scotland A - Potential banana skin. Scotland will spring one surprise and my guess is this might be it
England H - Tricky one. England will have had time to adapt to the new regime, are at home, and will want to win this one. If Ireland haven't slipped up, they'll be going for a slam, though. Draw.

W3 L1 D1

Scotland
England A - they'll come in with real ambition, but I think England will want it more
Wales H - should be a great match and they might just squeak it
France A - hard to see them winning this one
Ireland H - even at home, Ireland look too settled
Italy H - can't see them losing this.

W3 L2

England
Scotland H - Potential banana skin, and Scotland have recent form in the Calcutta Cup, but I expect Borthwick to have done his homework and his players to be desperate to impress. England win
Italy H - England haven't lost to Italy before, and are unlikely to start now.
Wales A - Too much of an ask, too soon in Borthwick's reign.
France H - To some extent this game defines England's series. I expect it to be close, but probably a win for France unless they are out of contention for the title
Ireland A - The 6N usually produces one surprise result and I'm guessing this could be it. Draw.

W2 L2 D1

Wales
Ireland H - Home advantage will make it close, but I think Ireland will have too much for Wales, especially as Gatland led teams tend to have a weak first outing in each series
Scotland A - Should be a cracking game, but the Scots will be up for it at home. Barring injuries, narrow win for Scotland
England H - Unless Borthwick can really galvanise England, this should be Wales. Home advantage and mid series is a good time for them to face England
Italy A - Italy will be targeting at least one upset and Wales have form... but I think they will probably win.
France A - Can't see them turning over France

W2 L3

Italy
France H - A very tough opener.
England A - Not gonna happen
Ireland H - Nor this.
Wales H - Could be close, but probably not this time
Scotland A - Nope

W0 L5

Caveats: Feels a bit harsh on Italy, who could spring a surprise on someone, my confidence is not the same for all results and the formatting of the site may mean I've not been consistent in allocating wins and losses. But it's a start for discussion?


Last edited by Poorfour on Mon 23 Jan 2023, 3:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by geoff999rugby Mon 23 Jan 2023, 2:08 pm

bsando wrote:France and Ireland are clear favourites but of the two I would bet in France to win. Ireland have so much power in their pack but their slim win over Australia in the autumn was evidence that they’re not always on their game against the more free flowing sides.


Ireland beat Australia by 3 points in the autumn, France beat them by 1

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Post by RiscaGame Mon 23 Jan 2023, 2:44 pm

I think Ireland will win it, as their toughest games are at home. England second, France third.

Not sure on Wales. Would've probably bet Wales to finish 6th under Pivac though.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Mon 23 Jan 2023, 3:02 pm

PoorFour, do you have Scotland losing to Ireland in the Scotland write-up and beating Ireland in the Ireland write-up?

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Post by bsando Mon 23 Jan 2023, 3:11 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:
bsando wrote:France and Ireland are clear favourites but of the two I would bet in France to win. Ireland have so much power in their pack but their slim win over Australia in the autumn was evidence that they’re not always on their game against the more free flowing sides.


Ireland beat Australia by 3 points in the autumn, France beat them by 1

I see what you’re saying. I meant it more as Ireland can be beaten via expansive rugby rather than a pure power game which only England and France are arguably capable of in the 6N.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 23 Jan 2023, 3:33 pm

Hazel Sapling wrote:PoorFour, do you have Scotland losing to Ireland in the Scotland write-up and beating Ireland in the Ireland write-up?

Looks like I do. Edited.


Last edited by Poorfour on Mon 23 Jan 2023, 4:11 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by lostinwales Mon 23 Jan 2023, 3:37 pm

Shrodinger's Centenary Quaich

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Post by Cumbrian Mon 23 Jan 2023, 3:47 pm

I can't really see past Ireland or France to be honest.

I hope England give a good account of themselves and gain something to build upon towards the world cup.
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Post by Recwatcher16 Tue 24 Jan 2023, 9:13 am

From an English perspective I would rather play France at home than Ireland and think England could well do Ireland a favour by narrowly beating France at Twickenham. For Ireland, the question will be whether Sexton lasts the tournament, doubtful on current evidence. Wales will have one big win with Gatland back and it could be England in Cardiff.

I get a little bemused that Englands last game of the tournament is usually away and with a SH ref, but maybe that is just me...

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Post by mountain man Tue 24 Jan 2023, 9:29 am

Predictions rather like betting is a mugs game and sooner or later you end up losing.
All I care about as far as England go is seeing what 15/23 is picked and then how they play.
If the best team is picked, they play well but beaten on day by a better side then can't ask for more.

Think it's unlikely Italy, Wales or Scotland will win 6N and I really don't think England will either.
Going on last year or so it's very hard to make a case for any team other than France or Ireland to win 6N.
Could be bounce of ball or more likely a card or two that decides it unfortunately.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Tue 24 Jan 2023, 11:13 am

I know this sounds far fetched.....but if England click, they could take the title (GS a bit far I think)....the schedule is pretty easy on them.

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Post by Poorfour Tue 24 Jan 2023, 12:08 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I know this sounds far fetched.....but if England click, they could take the title (GS a bit far I think)....the schedule is pretty easy on them.

Wales and Ireland away are always tough - they tend to raise their game for England at home. I think (without checking the stats) that England have historically tended to slip up on one of those games more often than they have with Scotland and France away. That said, post-2019 France are a very different beast, so maybe it's better to have them at home.
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Post by TJ Tue 24 Jan 2023, 3:40 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I know this sounds far fetched.....but if England click, they could take the title (GS a bit far I think)....the schedule is pretty easy on them.

I don't think that is farfetched. It all depends on how Borthwick and the squad gell and if he can give them a gameplan that works for the team

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Post by mikey_dragon Tue 24 Jan 2023, 4:18 pm

Wales for the Grand Slam.

Furlong and Sexton might not be available for the first round, plus Gatland thinks we hate the Irish the most so why not.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Tue 24 Jan 2023, 4:19 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I know this sounds far fetched.....but if England click, they could take the title (GS a bit far I think)....the schedule is pretty easy on them.

It is not far-fetched. Can see a scenario where England go four wins and one loss with France and Ireland dropping games. Even Italy are starting to look less of a team you can send a second side over to beat

On the other end, England could lose at home to a Finn Russell-inspired Scotland and unravel away to Wales before facing France and Ireland gunning for their own Six Nations glory.

The margins are very fine

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Post by Collapse2005 Tue 24 Jan 2023, 4:20 pm

I think that only four teams are in contention. England, Ireland, Wales and France. All these teams are good enough to win but only Ireland and France are good enough to get a slam at the moment. I think Ireland will win without a slam, losing to France or Wales and France will lose to England or Ireland.

Scotland are good enough to win three games but not good enough to win four. Italy are good enough to win one but will be doing very well if they do win one.

Table:
Jonny Sexton
England
France
Wales
Scotland
Italy

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Post by Recwatcher16 Thu 26 Jan 2023, 11:33 am

Collapse2005 wrote:I think that only four teams are in contention. England, Ireland, Wales and France. All these teams are good enough to win but only Ireland and France are good enough to get a slam at the moment. I think Ireland will win without a slam, losing to France or Wales and France will lose to England or Ireland.

Scotland are good enough to win three games but not good enough to win four. Italy are good enough to win one but will be doing very well if they do win one.

Table:
Jonny Sexton
England
France
Wales
Scotland
Italy

For those that like stats, France haven't won at Twickenham since 2005, when the won by a point. France have only completed slams in even years this century and so France will absolutely be targeting that Dublin game before they get to Twickenham a full month later and hopefully losing to an England side starting to identify a Borthwick style. So I can see France winning in Dublin and then a backs to the wall performance on the Paddys weekend with a SH ref, Ireland beating England and then its down to points difference, courtesy of Sexton. So the above table could well be right !

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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 26 Jan 2023, 2:30 pm

England are a bit of a worry. When Lancaster took over from Johnson, and Jones took over from Lancaster, England did well (2nd in the 2012 Six Nations, Grand Slam in 2016), so it's tempting to think might see something similar now.

In 2012, though, there had been a real clear out, and England helped Lancaster keep the coaching job by playing their hearts out. A feature of the 2012 tournament was England scrambling to get back to their feet to do some frantic last ditch defending.

In 2016, English players had a real chip on their shoulder after all the ridicule following their early World Cup exit. Jones kept most of Lancaster's squad, instilled some belief, and pointed them in the right direction. That squad had something to prove.

This year doesn't have either of those qualities. Borthwick hasn't had a clear out like Lancaster. He couldn't possibly do so, this close to a World Cup. It's also doubtful that England feel written-off in the same way as that 2016 squad.

As this is so close to a World Cup, players can't help but be a bit more calculating than they would have been in 2012 or 2016. In those squads, you got a real sense of playing for each other. Now, there must be more than a few players thinking, at the back of their minds, "What do I need to do, to go to the World Cup?", which is a more selfish perspective.

In the best case, Borthwick and Sinfield are an inspirational pairing, able to bring a focus which gets instant buy-in. However, it's also possible that England become very fragile when the tide of the game goes against them. Some players become more introverted, to avoid making mistakes, and others more reckless, giving away careless penalties, trying to impose themselves on the match.

There's an example of an England team playing just like that. When Johnson took over from Brian Ashton, England lost to Australia, South Africa and NZ in the 2008 Autumn Internationals. We then lost to Wales and Ireland in the 2009 Six Nations (though the other results saw us into 2nd overall). Steve Borthwick was captain.


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Post by cb Thu 26 Jan 2023, 5:28 pm

I think many of the predictions are very reasonable but does anyone think red cards could be more of a factor this year?

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 26 Jan 2023, 7:44 pm

cb wrote:I think many of the predictions are very reasonable but does anyone think red cards could be more of a factor this year?

They couldn’t be any more a factor than the last time Wales won could they?

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 26 Jan 2023, 7:45 pm

cb wrote:I think many of the predictions are very reasonable but does anyone think red cards could be more of a factor this year?

You’d hope so, that’s Wales’ 16th man. How about Ireland’s 16th man, Wayne Barnes?

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 26 Jan 2023, 7:47 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
cb wrote:I think many of the predictions are very reasonable but does anyone think red cards could be more of a factor this year?

You’d hope so, that’s Wales’ 16th man. How about Ireland’s 16th man, Wayne Barnes?

laughing

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Post by mountain man Fri 27 Jan 2023, 8:55 am

cb wrote:I think many of the predictions are very reasonable but does anyone think red cards could be more of a factor this year?

I don't know about more but it seems highly likely cards will be a factor, again. My pick for 6N is between Ire and Fra and whoever doesn't get carded most likely to be winner. Bit sad and a bit of an indication of where rugby is at when one of the first things that we consider is red cards.

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Post by Collapse2005 Mon 30 Jan 2023, 8:58 pm

I think this might be the first ever 6 nations where the world number 1 and 2 ranked teams are in the tournament.

I also think the six teams involved make up the strongest quality teams of all time. Even this Italy side are one of their strongest in a long time and interestingly one of the Italy squads with the fewest overseas born players ever with only about three or four. Six very strong head coaches too in my view.

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Post by dummy_half Wed 01 Feb 2023, 10:15 am

Predictions are hard, especially about the future.

Not a huge amount between the teams - you'd probably put Ireland and France a notch ahead and Italy a notch behind the British teams, but the difference is still likely to be 'on the day' performances. Also, have to allow for injuries - the teams taking the field for the 5th match may look significantly different from those this weekend, and some squads have areas of weakness (England thin at 2nd row for example, and already have fitness issues at hooker), so how teams deal with this will be a significant factor.

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Post by eirebilly_01 Wed 01 Feb 2023, 10:17 am

Feels like France on points only to be. I cannot see a GS.

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Post by Pete330v2 Wed 01 Feb 2023, 10:52 am

Collapse2005 wrote:I think this might be the first ever 6 nations where the world number 1 and 2 ranked teams are in the tournament.

I also think the six teams involved make up the strongest quality teams of all time. Even this Italy side are one of their strongest in a long time and interestingly one of the Italy squads with the fewest overseas born players ever with only about three or four. Six very strong head  coaches too in my view.

I think Italy are looking as strong as they ever have, in any other year they could cause a few squeaky bums but they don't travel well and host France and Ireland in Rome as well as a Welsh side eager for revenge so they've chosen a tough year to come good. England and Wales are the unknown quantities with new (well a kind of new) coaches on board but hey, they are England and Wales, even in flux they are sides against which you will need you A+ game. As excited as I am as an Irishman our tournament could look a bit derailed after week number one, I don't think it'll happen, Cardiff has been a decent hunting ground for Ireland through the years but it's Wales and they have a Gatland. Scotland get the annual dark-horse tag and never fulfill it, I hate to say it Scots but you have that tag again but will be very hard to beat.
It certainly looks like the tightest tournament for many years.

Ireland's home advantage against France and England might sway things their way or is that just my biased view shining through.
Ireland to win, no GS but bonus points and points difference to be of more importance than ever.

Then again maybe France with a GS.

No, Ireland with a GS.

I dunno

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Post by sensisball Wed 01 Feb 2023, 12:33 pm

Predicted table:
Ireland
France
England or Wales!
Scotland
Italy

Think France might be less effective than last year. Penaud has been struggling to find his form in a stuttering Clermont side and has missed the last three games with a leg injury.
On the other wing Villiers is only now beginning to hit the form he showed last year and has only been called into the squad as an injury replacement this week.
Jonathan Danty is injured, and will miss most of the competition.
Cameron Woki hasn't made the squad which reduces the dynamism of the pack a bit. Balancing that Seku Macalou looks like the best super sub in world rugby: covers the back row and wing!
I think France will lose to Ireland, just, and Mister teapot head himself will secure the championship for Ireland through points difference.

So Ireland to win, probably with a slam (unless Gatland springs a nasty surprise this weekend).
France to finish second (probably not bad going into their WC, puts a bit of realism back into the players, coaches and fans)
Third is a toss up between a resurgent England and Wales.
Scotland, to play well in patches, but not string it all together to finish fourth.
Italy to finish last but will, again, play well in patches

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