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The pick of the stats ahead of Round 2

The pick of the stats ahead of Round 2

The pick of the stats ahead of Round 2

The team news is filtering through, intensity in training is ramping up and rugby fans are busy reserving their spots on the sofa ahead of a busy weekend of international action.

The second round of Autumn Nations Cup action is fast approaching and offers up three cracking contests.

England and Ireland, both victorious last weekend, go head-to-head at Twickenham while Wales and Georgia are each looking to get up and running in Llanelli.

In Group B, Scotland are looking to beat France at BT Murrayfield for the second time this year – but Fabien Galthie’s men will be eager to mark their return to the field in style.

Behind all these games are a wealth of statistics which give us an indicator of what to expect from the weekend’s action. Let’s take a look at the best of them…

England v Ireland (Saturday November 21, KO 15:00, Twickenham)

  • England have won nine of their last 12 Tests against Ireland, including a 24-12 victory in the 2020 Guinness Six Nations.
  • Ireland will be aiming for their 50thTest victory over England, a milestone they have already achieved against Scotland (65 wins) and Wales (55 wins).
  • England have won 26 of their last 29 home matches, drawing one and losing two. New Zealand and Ireland are the only sides to beat them at Twickenham in that run, both of which came in 2018.
  • Ireland have lost their last three Tests on the road (including neutral venues). They have not been on a longer winless run outside Ireland since a six-match sequence between October 2011 and June 2012
  • Ireland slotted six penalty goals in their win over Wales in their Group A opener. They have only kicked as many as that in a match on one other occasion in the past 15 years, against France in the 2015 Guinness Six Nations. Those penalties were scored by three different players – Johnny Sexton, Billy Burns and Conor Murray – to mark the first time three different players have scored penalty goals in the same match for Ireland.
  • England were the only side on the opening weekend of the Autumn Nations Cup to win 100 per cent of their lineouts, claiming all 22 of their throws. This was the most lineouts a Tier 1 side has won in a Test match since Wales claimed 25 against Uruguay at the 2015 World Cup.
  • England conceded only five penalties against Georgia last weekend, the fewest of any side in Round 1, while Ireland won 18 penalties against Wales – more than any other nation.
  • Elliot Daly has scored five tries against Ireland, each of which have come in his last four games against them. Only Rory Underwood (7) and Cyril Lowe (6) have scored more tries for England against Ireland than Daly.

Wales v Georgia (Saturday November 21, KO 17:15, Parc y Scarlets)

  • This will be the third meeting between these two nations. Wales have won each of the previous two encounters, 13-6 at Principality Stadium in November 2017 and 43-14 in a pool stage clash at the 2019 World Cup.
  • Wales have lost three of their last four home Tests, including their inaugural Test at Parc y Scarlets against Scotland in October’s Guinness Six Nations clash.
  • Wales have now lost their last six consecutive matches, their worst run since an eight-game glut between June 2012 and February 2013.
  • Georgia’s only win against one of the current Tier 1 nations came against Japan, the newest team to secure Tier 1 status, in 2014. They have lost all 31 other clashes against Tier 1 sides.
  • Georgia’s failure to score a single point at Twickenham last weekend (a 40-0 defeat against England) was just the third time in their history they have not troubled the scoreboard. The others came in 2008 (0-28 against Japan) and 1998 (0-70 against Ireland).
  • Georgia and Wales each recorded a 91 per cent tackle success rate in the opening round of Autumn Nations Cup, the best rate of any team.
  • Akaki Tabutsadze has scored five tries for Georgia in 2020, placing him level with France’s Charles Ollivon as international rugby’s leading try-scorer this calendar year. Four of Tabutsadze’s scores came in the same game against Belgium in February, and he also crossed for his side’s only try in their defeat against Scotland in October.
  • Since the start of 2018, Johnny McNicholl has played more minutes (1,548) on the Parc y Scarlets pitch than anyone else, while only Steff Evans (12) has more tries than him (9) in that time.

Scotland v France (Sunday November 22, KO 15:15, BT Murrayfield)

  • Scotland have won their last two Tests against France, as many as they had won in the previous 15 meetings between the sides. The last time they won more consecutive Tests against Les Bleus was a three-match span between 1956 and 1958.
  • Scotland have won their last four meetings against France at BT Murrayfield, having won just one of the nine previous fixtures against Les Bleus in Edinburgh.
  • France and Scotland have met on just six occasions outside of the Five/Six Nations, with France winning four, one draw and one Scotland win. Scotland did win the most recent such contest, a World Cup warm-up match at BT Murrayfield in August 2019.
  • France have won 11 of their last 14 Tests, although two of their three defeats in that run came against Scotland.
  • Scotland have won their last five consecutive Tests, their best winning run since 2011. They have not won six in a row since 1990.
  • France scored the most points (138) and joint-most tries (17) in the 2020 Guinness Six Nations, while Scotland conceded the fewest points (59) and tries (5).
  • Charles Ollivon has scored five tries for France in 2020 – Sebastien Chabal is the only forward to have matched that tally in a calendar year (5 in 2007). Should Ollivon cross again in 2020 he would become the first Frenchman to score more than five tries in a non-World Cup year since Philippe Bernat-Sailes in 1998 (6).
  • Stuart Hogg needs one more try to move ahead of Tommy Seymour (20) as Scotland’s fourth top try scorer in men’s Test rugby. Two tries would see him move level with Chris Paterson (22) in third. Hogg has four tries against France, his joint-highest tally against any nation – he has also crossed four times against Italy.

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