Six Nations 2023 Stats Review_ Spherical One

Six Nations 2023 Stats Evaluation: Spherical One

The opening spherical of this 12 months’s Guinness Six Nations seen historic previous made, with three bonus-point away wins being registered for the first time inside the Championship. The reality is, three away wins in a weekend is rare, having solely occurred on three occasions inside the Championship sooner than this 12 months (spherical two in 2005, spherical 5 in 2006, and spherical 4 in 2022).

Our consultants from OptaJonny dive into the information from the opening spherical to see the place each recreation was acquired and misplaced…

Wales 10-34 Ireland

Warren Gatland acquired a Grand Slam in his first Guinness Six Nations advertising marketing campaign accountable for an underachieving Wales side in 2008. If Welsh followers had any hopes of the identical revival beneath most likely essentially the most worthwhile coach inside the Championship’s historic previous, they could have had these dashed after the opening half hour in Cardiff when Ireland sailed to a 27-3 lead.

Wales would rally early inside the second half with Liam Williams getting over the whitewash to supply his side a glimmer of hope, nonetheless they couldn’t capitalise on any of the promising attacking options that received right here their technique afterwards. Ireland put the last word nail inside the coffin to secure a bonus degree with decrease than 10 minutes remaining, the first time Ireland had scored 4 (or further) tries away to Wales in a 5/Six Nations recreation since 1991.

Lastly it was Ireland’s dominant first half that was key to victory, so it’s needed to try that interval of the game. Watching the encounter, it might need appeared like Ireland have been dominating the breakdown, nonetheless the 2 sides have been remarkably comparable for widespread ruck velocity with Ireland fractionally quicker at 3.01 seconds as compared with Wales at 3.03 seconds, whereas Wales had a barely larger ratio of rucks beneath three seconds than Ireland (73%-70%).

The excellence, though, was inside the intention of the defending teams on the breakdown. Ireland not typically attacked the breakdown as soon as they’ve been defending inside the first half, not committing a single participant to 38% of Wales’ attacking rucks and 84% seeing no a few participant change into concerned on the breakdown. This meant that Wales had a ruck velocity that matched Ireland’s, nonetheless Andy Farrell’s males have been not at all really caught fast inside the defensive place. No matter this moreover they managed as many jackal turnovers as Wales inside the first 40 minutes in Cardiff (one).

After the break Wales have been a lot greater in defence, nonetheless their assault didn’t pretty click on on as they squandered quite a lot of good attacking options. They conceded 9 turnovers inside the second half alone, with 5 of those coming contained within the Irish 22 – Italy (three) have been the one totally different nation to concede a few turnover inside the opposition 22 on the weekend. Consequently, Wales made 11 entries into the Ireland 22 nonetheless averaged merely 0.91 components per entry. Every totally different workforce averaged over two components per entry inside the opening spherical.

One silver lining for Wales is that they’re going to solely get greater. Gatland has had very restricted time alongside together with his squad and due to this went for the tried and trusted avid gamers who delivered him rather a lot success by means of the years.

Nonetheless, a couple of of Wales’ brightest performances on the weekend received right here from their youthful avid gamers and as quickly as Gatland will get to spend further time observing the a lot much less expert avid gamers in teaching he would possibly successfully throw them into his squad to inject some current impetus into the workforce.

England 23-29 Scotland

There was a method of déjà vu following Scotland’s Calcutta Cup victory over England, offered that it’s the third 12 months in a row that Gregor Townsend’s side have overwhelmed their rivals in spherical one in every of many Guinness Six Nations. As quickly as a fixture by which Scotland had forgotten that profitable feeling, now it’s England who’re starting to neglect what the Calcutta Cup appears to be like.

Scotland have now acquired three in a row in the direction of England for the first time as a result of the early Seventies and have recorded back-to-back wins at Twickenham for the first time ever – the ultimate time they acquired consecutive video video games away to England was a six-game streak between 1899 and 1909, a run that led to 1911 of their first ever meeting on the newly-built Twickenham.

Put merely, Scotland have been further setting pleasant than England on Saturday. Townsend’s workforce had merely seven entries into the opposition 22, the joint-fewest inside the spherical (diploma with Italy), nonetheless they received right here away with 4 tries and a penalty, averaging a round-high 4.1 components per entry.

Scotland have been ruthlessly setting pleasant from their line breaks too – they made six in complete and all 4 of their tries received right here following a break. The reality is, they made two line breaks inside the assemble as a lot as their profitable try, that signifies that only one break received right here to nothing (and even then they more than likely should have scored, Scotland knocking the ball on following a Kyle Steyn break up the touchline).

The one totally different workforce to see at least half of their line breaks result in a try was England (50%) and that was because of they solely made two breaks inside the recreation – growing in the direction of a miserly Scotland defence that was among the many best in Check out rugby ultimate 12 months.

90% – @Scotlandteam recorded a 90% cope with success worth in 2022, the simplest worth of any Tier 1 nation, whereas in assault they beat most likely essentially the most defenders per recreation of any side (24.3). Thistle.

Strive our @SixNationsRugby workforce previews on the @OptaAnalyst ⬇️ — OptaJonny (@OptaJonny) February 1, 2023

Like Wales, England need time to get greater, with Steve Borthwick having restricted time alongside together with his males since taking the reins and there have been indicators that enhancements may be on the easiest way. Nonetheless, Scotland have been worthy winners, and so they’ll now flip their focus to spherical two.

Whereas it’s true that Scotland have now overwhelmed England in each of the ultimate three editions of the Six Nations, the Scots have seen that work undone per week later with defeats in the direction of Wales in 2021 and 2022. However as soon as extra, Scotland face the Welsh in spherical two this 12 months, nonetheless they’ll be seeking a extremely fully totally different ultimate consequence.

Italy 24-29 France

Earlier journeys to face Italy in Rome on spherical one have proved to be a banana pores and pores and skin for France inside the Guinness Six Nations and for lots of the second half on Sunday it felt identical to the Azzurri may end any French Grand Slam hopes on the earliest stage potential in 2023.

There is a renewed sense of optimism surrounding Italian rugby after a constructive 2022, nonetheless after the opening half hour, with France crossing for 3 tries and looking cozy, many might have questioned whether or not or not it was a false dawn. Nonetheless, Italy rallied with a try from Ange Capuozzo sooner than a penalty on the stroke of half-time from Tommaso Allan took them to inside 5 components of France on the break.

It purchased greater for the Azzurri inside the second half, a penalty attempt to a penalty purpose putting them in entrance with decrease than 20 minutes to go. Nonetheless France sparked into life rapidly after with Jalibert scoring the profitable try. Italy continued to make use of stress until the last word moments of the game though, with France defence coach Shaun Edwards admitting his side have been hanging on on the end.

It was disappointing for Italy to return so shut, nonetheless they’re persevering with to reinforce – as are their U20s who had a equally heartbreaking defeat to France on Friday evening – and within the occasion that they preserve their diploma of effectivity all by means of this Six Nations, they could give themselves an unlimited chance to stay away from the Picket Spoon for the first time since 2015.

Self-discipline carried out an unlimited half on this fixture. France conceded 18 penalties – their most since 2014 (moreover 18 versus Italy) whereas the ultimate time they conceded further inside the Championship was 20 years up to now (20 vs. Italy in 2003).

18 – France conceded 18 penalties in the direction of Italy, their most in any Check out match since conceding 18 in the direction of Italy by means of the 2014 Six Nations; the ultimate time they conceded further in a Six Nations recreation was in 2003, moreover in the direction of the Azzurri (20). Unruly. — OptaJonny (@OptaJonny) February 6, 2023

Within the meantime, Italy conceded merely seven – the ultimate time they conceded fewer in a Six Nations recreation was in 2019 in the direction of France (5). That meant a differential of 11 penalties; solely six matches in Six Nations historic previous have seen a a lot greater gap inside the number of penalties conceded by each workforce and solely two of those seen the workforce who conceded further penalties go on to win the game, equivalent to France did on the weekend.

France will actually really feel barely fortunate to have come away from Rome with not solely the win, however as well as with a try bonus degree and so they’ll need to be greater in the event that they’re to beat Ireland in Dublin in spherical two. Nonetheless, France are on a report profitable run – 14 video video games and counting – and 4 of the ultimate 5 have been acquired by margins of merely 5 components or fewer.

Worthwhile is a conduct and France understand how one can do precisely adequate to return out on the suitable side of the ranking line.

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