10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
Three out of the four provinces managed wins this weekend in Europe, pretty much reflecting the views of irishrugby.ie users in our latest poll.
We asked you, with both the Heineken Cup and European Challenge Cup's pool stages coming to a climax: "Which of the provinces is most likely to win in Europe this weekend?"
Many thanks to the 1238 of you who voted - your top two predictions were spot on. You rated Leinster, who currently reside in second place in Heineken Cup Pool Five, as the most likely of the provinces to notch up a win with lowly Glasgow the visitors to the RDS. The Leinster (home v Glasgow) option polled 40% (506 votes) as the most favoured option. Michael Cheika's side duly obliged with an eight try 46-22 trouncing of the Scots.
Next up you rated a Munster win in Castres as a distinct possibility and the men in red delivered in some style on Friday night, running in seven tries in a handsome 46-9 defeat of Laurent Seigne's hosts at the Stade Pierre Antoine. The Munster (away v Castres) option gained a 31% (387) share of the vote.
Unfortunately, Ulster, the 1999 winners, lost their five-year unbeaten home record in the Heineken Cup to Pool Four leaders Biarritz on Friday. Ravenhill was rocked as the French outfit gained a vital 24-8 victory. 14% (184) of you thought Mark McCall's side looked well-placed to secure the match points at Ravenhill, but it was not to be.
Connacht tails were up on Saturday afternoon at the Sportsground as the westerners pulled off a thrilling 43-10 Pool Five win over Montpellier in the Challenge Cup. 13% (161) reckoned that Connacht's home tie looked particularly winnable.