Belfast Telegraph

The Punter: French team are the toast of Paris

Oh la la, Ireland really came up short against the French in Paris last Saturday.

It was a case of men against boys as the Irish rugby boys were outmuscled in the city of romance on the eve of Valentine’s Day.

Certainly there was no love lost between the teams and Jerry Flannery’s moment of madness when kicking out at Alexis Palisson which saw an Irish penalty reversed in favour of France and, subsequently, the opening try, really put the kibosh on any slender hopes that Ireland might have had.

And so the show moves on to Twickenham in a fortnight’s time and after England’s less than impressive win in Italy, Ireland must have a chance of bouncing back with a win for which they are 11-10. But on the handicap, they are an even better bet with a two-point start (10-11).

Victory there would give them a decent chance of retaining the Triple Crown |(2-1) with Wales and Scotland to come at Croke Park.

England have been eased to a general 7-2 to win the Six Nations crown and 8-1 for the Grand Slam where France are now a must bet at evens. No Grand Slam winner is at best 11-8.

Only Wales, who got out of jail at home to the Scots, should present any sort of problem to the French — although that should be limited even in Cardiff.

Six Nations round three matches (Feb 26 and 27): 5-4 Wales v France |8-13; 16-1 draw; 6-5 Italy v Scotland |4-6; 18-1 draw; 8-11 England v Ireland 11-10; 18-1 draw.

Belfast Telegraph

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