Click here for photos from Ireland’s Triple Crown-confirming win over England at Twickenham on Saturday.
Pictured above: Ireland captain Brian O’Driscoll leads Ireland out at Twickenham for the 27th time in his career. Saturday’s win marked the men in green’s 21st triumph with O’Driscoll as skipper.
He said afterwards: “This is a stepping stone to bigger things, hopefully. We’ll celebrate it tonight. We needed the performance we’ve been talking about this week for the whole of the 6 Nations and to put it in at Twickenham to win this Triple Crown feels good. The character this team has shown over those 80 minutes is phenomenal.”
O’Driscoll’s Leinster team mate Shane Horgan goes over for a ninth-minute try in the right corner, replying to England’s opener from Newcastle centre Jamie Noon after barely two minutes. The score, set up by an O’Driscoll kick through and a timely slip by Ben Cohen, was Horgan’s third in seven Test matches, and 15th overall.
England captain Martin Corry gets to grips with Ireland’s Gordon D’Arcy. Leicester back row Corry, writing in his column for the Guardian newspaper, felt his side were let down by Saturday’s match officials. “I’m not saying that two contentious line calls were the reasons we lost but they certainly played a part.
“I have yet to hear from anyone who believes the ball did not bounce on the touchline in the build-up to Shane Horgan’s first try, and the marginal decision to pull back Ben Cohen when he took a quick throw-in near our line also led to Denis Leamy scoring from the retaken lineout.
“In the first instance, I think it’s ludicrous that the rules do not allow the video referee to check whether the touch judge was right to put his flag down having initially raised it. In Ben’s case, the law makers seem to want it both ways. There is no consistency. On the one hand, players are encouraged to take quick throws to speed up play and entertain the fans – on the other, they are hauled back for fractional transgressions.”
Brian O’Driscoll offloads under pressure from England centre Stuart Abbott.
Ireland full-back Geordan Murphy on the attack at Twickenham. The Kildare man has been ever-present in the Irish side this season, lining out in all three autumn internationals and the five Tests during the RBS 6 Nations campaign. His only try was against Romania last November.
Ireland out-half Ronan O’Gara lines out a kick at goal. The Corkman’s 13-point haul at Twickenham helped him not only bring his all-time Irish record points tally to 607 points, but he also finished as the RBS 6 Nations Championship’s top scorer for the second consecutive season with 76 points.
**All photos by Billy Stickland and Morgan Treacy of Inpho Photography**