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Ireland v France: Facts & Figures

Ireland v France: Facts & Figures

Two Ireland teams will contest their respective RBS 6 Nations titles when the Women’s side travel to Pau and Joe Schmidt’s men make the trip to Paris. Meanwhile, the Ireland Under-20s will also be in action in the Championship’s final round – facing their French counterparts in Tarbes.

WOMEN’S RBS 6 NATIONS: Friday, March 14

FRANCE WOMEN (1st) v IRELAND WOMEN (2nd), Stade du Hameau, Pau, 6.45pm local time/5.45pm Irish time (live RTÉ Two/’Game On’ RTÉ 2fm/www.rte.ie/live (worldwide))

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– France Women need to win to secure their first Women’s Grand Slam and Championship since 2005

– France have lost just one of their last eight Championship fixtures: 15-10 to Ireland in Ashbourne last year, while they have not been defeated at home in the tournament since England visited Stade Charlety in Paris in March 2012

– The Ireland Women’s team must win by a margin of at least 20 points to get themselves ahead of France in the Six Nations table, but even then it may not be enough to secure a second successive title, as England, who play Italy on Sunday, also have a chance of winning the silverware

– Ireland’s only defeat in their last nine matches at this level was 17-10 to England at Twickenham in round 3

– Ireland have beaten France only twice in a dozen previous meetings in the Women’s Six Nations: in Ashbourne in 2009 and 2013

– Pau hosts only its second Women’s international: France beat Ireland there 8-7 in 2012

– Eight players are level at the top of the try scoring charts with three tries each, including Ireland’s Sophie Spence, who ran in a hat-trick against Scotland, Lynne Cantwell, Alison Miller and Heather O’Brien

– Ireland full-back Niamh Briggs (26 points from four conversions and six penalties) is the 2014 Championship’s joint top points scorer. France’s Sandrine Agricole has also amassed 26 points courtesy of a try, six conversions, two penalties and a drop goal

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Women’s RBS 6 Nations Results/Fixtures

Women’s RBS 6 Nations Table

FRANCE WOMEN: Christelle Le Duff (USAP); Marion Lievre (Bobigny), Shannon Izar (Lille), Marjorie Mayans (Saint Orens), Camille Grassineau (Bordeaux); Sandrine Agricole (Rennes), Jennifer Troncy (Montpellier); Helene Ezanno (Lille), Gaelle Mignot (Montpellier) (capt), Elodie Portaries (Montpellier), Marine De Nadaï (Montpellier), Assa Koita (Bobigny), Koumiba Djossouvi (Montpellier), Coumba Diallo (Bobigny), Safi N’Diaye (Montpellier).

Replacements: Laetitia Salles (La Valette), Julie Duval (Ovalie Caennaise), Lise Arricastre (Lons), Sandra Rabier (Ovalie Caennaise), Laetitia Grand (Lons), Elodie Poublan (Montpellier), Jessy Tremouliere (Romagnat), Yanna Rivoalen (Lille).

IRELAND WOMEN: Niamh Briggs (UL Bohemians/Munster); Ashleigh Baxter (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster), Lynne Cantwell (Richmond/Exile), Jenny Murphy (Old Belvedere/Leinster), Alison Miller (Portlaoise/UCC/Connacht); Nora Stapleton (Old Belvedere/Leinster), Larissa Muldoon (Bristol/Exile); Fiona Coghlan (UL Bohemians/Leinster) (capt), Gillian Bourke (UL Bohemians/Munster), Ailis Egan (Old Belvedere/Leinster), Sophie Spence (Old Belvedere/Leinster), Marie Louise Reilly (Old Belvedere/Leinster), Siobhan Fleming (Tralee/Munster), Claire Molloy (Bristol/Connacht) 30, Heather O’Brien (Highfield/Munster).

Replacements: Stacey-Lea Kennedy (Cooke/Ulster), Fiona Hayes (UL Bohemians/Munster), Kerrie-Ann Craddock (Saracens/Exile), Paula Fitzpatrick (St. Mary’s/Leinster), Amy Davis (Blackrock/Ulster), Hannah Casey (Saracens/Exile), Grace Davitt (Cooke/Ulster), Jackie Shiels (Richmond/Exile).

Referee: Leah Berard (USA)
Assistant Referees: Guillaume Trieux, Didier Mastoumecq (both France)
Television Match Official: Eric Gonthier (France)

RBS UNDER-20 6 NATIONS: Friday, March 14

FRANCE UNDER-20s (1st) v IRELAND UNDER-20s (3rd), Stade Maurice Trélut, Tarbes, 8.55pm local time/7.55pm Irish time (live RTÉ Two/www.rte.ie/live (island of Ireland only))

– A French victory will earn them their first Under-20 Six Nations Grand Slam and only a second Championship title (the other was in 2009)

– The France Under-20s have won their last six matches in all tournaments since South Africa beat them at La Roche-sur-Yon in last summer’s IRB Junior World Championships

– Tarbes holds its first major representative match since France ‘A’ and South Africa ‘A’ faced off in November 2001

– The Ireland Under-20s beat Italy 18-0 in round 4 but have not won back-to-back games in the tournament since 2012

– Ireland have not won away from home in the Under-20s Six Nations since beating France 13-12 in Grenoble in round 2 in 2012

– France won their most recent encounter with Ireland at the Under-20 level, 9-8 in the Junior World Championship last June to end a three-match losing streak against the Irish youngsters

– Ireland out-half Ross Byrne is the joint second top points scorer in the 2014 tournament so far with 31 points (five conversions and seven penalties). England’s Billy Burns leads the way with 42 points

– Number 8 Jack O’Donoghue – the man-of-the-match against Scotland – is Ireland’s top try scorer thanks to his brace in the opening round. Peadar Timmins, Oisin Heffernan, Cian Kelleher and Adam Byrne have also touched down

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RBS U-20 6 Nations Results/Fixtures

RBS U-20 6 Nations Table

FRANCE U-20: Pierre Justes (US Dax); Kylan Hamdaoui (AS Montferrand), Xavier Mignot (CS Bourgoin Jallieu), Francois Bouvier (St Toulousain), Lucas Blanc (Union Bordeaux Bègles); Brandon Fajardo (FC Auscitain Armagnac), Baptiste Serin (Union Bordeaux Bègles); Oleg Ishchenko (Montpellier HRC), Romain Ruffenach (Biarritz Ol), Tommy Raynaud (RC Narbonne Med), Arthur Iturria (AS Montferrand), Jean-Baptiste Singer (AS Montferrand), Jean Thomas (US Colomiers), Yacouba Camara (St Toulousain), Francois Cros (St Toulousain) (capt).

Replacements: Florian Ardiaca (AS Beziers H), Youssef Amrouni (AS Montferrand), Simon Courcoul (AS Montferrand), Felix Lambey (Lyon OL U), Jean-Blaise Lespinasse (Union Bordeaux Bègles), Thibault Daubagna (Section Paloise), Ivan Roux (RC Toulonnais), Francois Fontaine (AS Montferrand).

IRELAND U-20: Cian Kelleher (Lansdowne/Leinster); Alex Wootton (Garryowen/Munster), Dan Goggin (Young Munster/Munster), Peter Robb (Old Belvedere/Leinster), Adam Byrne (UCD/Leinster); Conor McKeon (Lansdowne/Leinster), Jack Cullen (Bruff/Munster); Peter Dooley (Lansdowne/Leinster), Max Abbott (Cork Constitution/Munster), Rory Burke (Cork Constitution/Munster), Sean O’Brien (Galwegians/Connacht) (capt), Ross Molony (UCD/Leinster), Peadar Timmins (UCD/Leinster), Rory Moloney (Buccaneers/Connacht), Jack O’Donoghue (UL Bohemians/Munster).

Replacements: Sean McNulty (UCD/Munster), Denis Coulson (Lansdowne/Leinster), Oisin Heffernan (Lansdowne/Leinster), Stephen Gardiner (Lansdowne/Leinster), Frankie Taggart (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster), Nick McCarthy (UCD/Leinster), Ross Byrne (UCD/Leinster), David Busby (Queen’s University/Ulster).

Referee: Lloyd Linton (Scotland)
Assistant Referees: Peter Allan, Stephen Hart (both Scotland)


FRANCE (3rd) v IRELAND (1st), Stade de France, 6pm local time/5pm Irish time (live RTÉ Two/BBC One/RTÉ Radio 1)


– France must beat their opponents to overhaul Ireland in the RBS 6 Nations table, it would then depend on the result of England’s earlier encounter with Italy to see who is crowned champions

– France have lost only one of their last six Championship matches: 27-6 in Wales in round 3, while they have not lost at the Stade de France in the tournament since Wales were the visitors in round 2 last season

– An Ireland victory will take them to eight points in the league table, a tally that only England could have a chance of matching, provided they beat Italy earlier in the day

– Ireland’s only defeat in the curren campaign came against England at Twickenham in round 3, while they have only won once in the final round since securing the Grand Slam in 2009, in beating England at the Aviva Stadium in 2011

– Ireland have not beaten France in any Test match since the Six Nations encounter at Croke Park in 2009, with the last two clashes both resulting in draws

– Ireland’s only victory over France in Paris since 1972 was 27-25 at the Stade de France in 2000


– Ireland have been the most disciplined side in the 2014 RBS 6 Nations, conceding just 27 penalties in the first four rounds

– Ireland are the best ruckers, losing only 18 of 458 rucks they have contested

– France have conceded the most turnovers so far with 68

– Ireland and France are at opposite ends of the passes thrown spectrum: Ireland lead the Championship with 710 passes, and France are in fifth spot with 485 – just six clear of Italy

– Ireland’s lineout is the most effective with just four losses and 57 ball wins

– The top offloaders are France with 67, while the worst are Ireland with 23

– Rob Kearney has carried the ball more often than any other player, his 54 carries gaining 370 metres

– Ireland have three of the top four turnover winners in their ranks: back rowers Peter O’Mahony, Chris Henry and Jamie Heaslip

RBS 6 Nations Results/Fixtures

RBS 6 Nations Table

FRANCE: Brice Dulin (Castres Olympique); Yoann Huget (Stade Toulousain), Mathieu Bastareaud (RC Toulon), Gaël Fickou (Stade Toulousain), Maxime Medard (Stade Toulousain); Remi Talès (Castres Olympique), Maxime Machenaud (Racing Metro 92); Thomas Domingo (Clermont Auvergne), Dimitri Szarzewski (Racing Metro 92), Nicolas Mas (Montpellier), Pascal Papé (Stade Francais) (capt), Yoann Maestri (Stade Toulousain), Louis Picamoles (Stade Toulousain), Alexandre Lapandry (Clermont Auvergne), Damien Chouly (Clermont Auvergne).

Replacements: Guilhem Guirado (USA Perpignan), Vincent Debaty (Clermont Auvergne), Rabah Slimani (Stade Francais), Alexandre Flanquart (Stade Francais), Sebastien Vahaamahina (USA Perpignan), Wenceslas Lauret (Racing Metro 92), Jean-Marc Doussain (Stade Toulousain), Maxime Mermoz (RC Toulon).

IRELAND: Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster); Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster), Brian O’Driscoll (UCD/Leinster), Gordon D’Arcy (Lansdowne/Leinster), Dave Kearney (Lansdowne/Leinster); Jonathan Sexton (Racing Metro 92), Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster); Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster), Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster), Mike Ross (Clontarf/Leinster), Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster), Paul O’Connell (Young Munster/Munster) (capt), Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster), Chris Henry (Malone/Ulster), Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster).

Replacements: Sean Cronin (St. Mary’s College/Leinster), Jack McGrath (St. Mary’s College/Leinster), Martin Moore (Lansdowne/Leinster), Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster), Jordi Murphy (Lansdowne/Leinster), Eoin Reddan (Lansdowne/Leinster), Ian Madigan (Blackrock College/Leinster), Fergus McFadden (Old Belvedere/Leinster).

Referee: Steve Walsh (Australia)
Assistant Referees: Wayne Barnes (England), Marius Mitrea (Italy)
Television Match Official: Gareth Simmonds (Wales)

– Compiled by SFMS Limited (Stuart Farmer Media Services)

RBS 6 Nations Statistics with Accenture