Wales vs Ireland

Only Ireland now stand between Wales and a first Grand Slam since 2012 on the final day of the 2019 Six Nations. The stage is set for a spectacular finish to the Championship with three sides still in contention on Super Saturday.


After wins over France, Italy, England and Scotland, the Welsh are chasing a third Grand Slam under Warren Gatland and victory – their 14th in a row in Test action – over an underperforming Ireland side will see them claim another in the New Zealander’s final year at the helm.

England will be hoping for a favour from the Boys in Green, with Eddie Jones’s side in action against Scotland at Twickenham in the last game of the afternoon.

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If Wales are defeated by Ireland on home soil or the match is drawn, then a victory would be enough for England to triumph.

Ireland, meanwhile, must beat Wales in order to successfully defend their title and hope that an injury-ravaged Scotland side can spring a shock and retain the Calcutta Cup.

Team news and line-ups

Gatland has named an unchanged 23 after his team relied on their defensive prowess to seal an 18-11 victory over Scotland at Murrayfield last weekend.

Crucially, that means key full-back Liam Williams has recovered from the shoulder injury that forced him off in Edinburgh.

In the second row, captain Alun Wyn Jones is set to equal Gethin Jenkins’ Test appearance record as he prepares to earn his 134th cap.

Wales XV: Williams; North, J Davies, Parkes, Adams; Anscombe, G Davies; Evans, Owens, Francis; Beard, AW Jones (c); Navidi, Tipuric, Moriarty

Replacements: Dee, Smith, Lewis, Ball, Wainwright, A Davies, Biggar, Watkin

Recovered: Liam Williams remains at 15 for Wales after battling a shoulder injury (Getty Images)

Joe Schmidt has made three changes to the side who kept their title hopes alive with a 26-14 win over France in Dublin, with Munster lock Tadhg Beirne making his Six Nations debut in place of Iain Henderson, who has a knee injury.

Josh van der Flier’s groin problem sees the London Irish-bound Sean O’Brien return to the back row, while full-back Jordan Larmour drops to the bench with Rob Kearney now recovered from a calf issue.

Andrew Porter, Quinn Roux and Kieran Marmion are all back on the bench, meanwhile.

Ireland XV: Kearney; Earls, Ringrose, Aki, Stockdale; Sexton, Murray; Healy, Best (c), Furlong; Beirne, Ryan; O’Mahony, O’Brien, Stander

Replacements: Scannell, Kilcoyne, Porter, Roux, Conan, Marmion, Carty, Larmour

Score prediction: Wales 14-21 Ireland

Wales have never previously lost a Grand Slam decider and, while they have not been massively impressive from an attacking standpoint, will back their miserly defence to see them through this weekend.

However, they will be sorely tested by an Ireland unit that have improved in recent weeks and dominated while scoring four tries against France, with only a brief late lapse lessening the margin of victory.

It could be that the Irish ruin the Grand Slam party in Cardiff and open the door for England. Much might depend on the weather factor with rain forecast and the roof at the Principality to remain open.

Betting tips via Betfair | UK users only | Subject to change

Match odds

Click here to find the latest match odds and place a bet.

TV channel and live stream, and online coverage

ITV and the BBC are sharing broadcasting rights for the Six Nations for the third successive year, with the BBC hosting Wales vs Ireland on BBC One and via their online iPlayer.

You can also follow all the action with Standard Sport’s LIVE blog.

Head to Head record and history (h2h)

These two rivals have met on 126 previous occasions, with Wales boasting 68 victories to Ireland’s 51. There have been seven draws.

Ireland, who have tasted defeat on three of their last five trips to Cardiff, were actually the last team to defeat Wales, running in five tries during a thrilling 37-27 victory during last year’s Six Nations.

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