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Dublin: 11 °C Saturday 23 February, 2019

Poll: Who'll win the 2019 Six Nations?

Can Ireland Joe Schmidt’s go back-to-back?

Ireland are 5/6 favourites to retain their Six Nations crown.
Ireland are 5/6 favourites to retain their Six Nations crown.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

AS THE WORLD Cup comes into sharp focus, the importance of this year’s Six Nations championship cannot be underestimated as teams begin their final preparations for Japan.

Ireland, as defending champions and the world’s second ranked side, are leading the northern hemisphere charge going into 2019, but certainly this campaign looks to be the most competitive in quite some time.

Joe Schmidt’s side will be favourites to retain their crown but Warren Gatland’s Wales — having completed a first November clean sweep — have been building very strongly, while Scotland are a step further along in their development under Gregor Townsend.

And then there’s Eddie Jones and England, who appear to be back on an upward trajectory after making strides in the right direction during the Autumn series, pushing the All Blacks all the way while also recording wins over South Africa, Australia and Japan.

Having lost their grip on the title last year with a disappointing fifth-place finish, England will be determined to get back on their perch, with the opening weekend fixture against Ireland in Dublin already looking pretty tasty.

France, well, are France. They endured a miserable November, slipping to that famous loss to Fiji at the Stade de France, and God only knows how they’ll front up in the Six Nations under Jacques Brunel having fallen down to ninth in the world.

The last time Les Bleus won the championship was back in 2010 and with a trip to Dublin on the agenda this time around, it’s hard to see them challenging in 2019. 

What of Conor O’Shea’s Italy? They avoided the tournament wooden spoon in 2015 but have finished bottom of the pile in the last three years and there has been little evidence to suggest they’ll muster a better challenge this year.

Who do you see winning the 2019 Six Nations? Let us know in the poll and comments section below. 

Poll Results:

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