Ireland have ended France’s 14-match winning run with a 32-19 bonus-point victory over their biggest rivals for the Six Nations title in a breathless game between the world’s top two teams that really lived up to its billing.
A gripping first half on Saturday featuring four tries — three of them to Ireland, including an amazing one-handed finish from James Lowe — gave way to a more attritional but equally absorbing second half.
France held on grimly until centre Garry Ringrose went over for the in shape-clinching 73rd-minute strive.
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France, the protecting champions, misplaced for the primary time in view that November 2021 in opposition to a group they had beaten of their final 3 meetings.
The pinnacle-ranked Irish are now company favorites for a first Six Nations identify due to the fact that 2019, having opened the match through amassing five points for hammering Wales 34-10.
“It turned into a huge sport, splendid teams going at every other,” Ireland instruct Andy Farrell stated. “The combating spirit become fantastic however we additionally performed a few high-quality stuff.
Damian Penaud scored France’s only try of the sport with a breakaway rating within the first half of of the Six Nations fit towards Ireland in Dublin.
Six Nations Rugby Ireland 32-19 France
Both teams scored lovely attempts, with Damian Penaud getting France’s with an effort that started with the winger bursting out of his personal 22, changing passes with flanker Anthony Jelonch, and then preserving off could-be tacklers to dash over the road.
Lowe’s turned into unique — and can were even higher.
Short of room in the left nook, the All Blacks-born winger took off inside the air beneath a undertaking from Penaud and managed to ground the ball one-exceeded close to the flag with his frame genuinely horizontal over the touchline.
Footage regarded to indicate considered one of his feet had scraped the grass while out of touch — however the try turned into given.
Lock Tadhg Beirne and key 5-eighth Johnny Sexton went off injured inside the second half of for Ireland, who have a -week smash before their 0.33 in shape, away to Italy.
France, who gained in Italy in spherical one, host Scotland next with their targets of lower back-to-lower back grand slams having been extinguished.
The Irish performed like they’d a factor to prove, with France the most effective main kingdom they’d no longer crushed since Farrell took over as teach after the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
Either facet of Lowe’s try were ratings by fullback Hugo Keenan — off a smart circulate from a ruck in which Australian prop Finlay Bealham was first receiver and deceived the French with an inner bypass to Keenan — and the alternative prop Andrew Porter, who barged over in the twenty seventh.
Porter’s strive got here even as France have been down to 14 after Uini Atonio became yellow-carded for a risky address on Rob Herring, whose face was struck by means of the shoulder of the French prop as he got here crashing in for the address.
France’s next match is at home to Scotland in two weeks but of greater interest might be a potential quarter-final rematch with the Irish at the Rugby World Cup later this year.
France did no longer concede any more points without Atonio but that was best due to some mind-blowing ultimate-ditch defending, extensively from Antoine Dupont, who showed high-quality power to hold Ireland’s other Aussie Mack Hansen faraway from the attempt line despite being off-stability.
Thomas Ramos booted over a penalty to trim France’s deficit to 19-16 before Atonio lower back best for Sexton to kick his personal with the last movement of the 1/2 to re-establish Ireland’s six-factor lead.
And that become the cushion Ireland had heading into the final 10 mins, after Ramos’s 62nd-minute dropped aim, before Ringrose shrugged off a French tackler in a rampaging run down the left flank and trundled over to kill off the hopes of France and its 6,000 travelling supporters.
In the other game of the day, Scotland thrashed Wales 35-7 at Murrayfield to begin the Six Nations championship with lower back-to-returned wins for the first time when you consider that 1996, when it became the Five Nations (without Italy, who joined in 2000).
The final recreation of the second one round might be the next day morning Australian time, when England and Italy will attempt to earn their first win of the tournament when they meet at Twickenham.