England rugby coach Eddie Jones hits out at referee after Ireland loss

England Player Ratings vs Ireland

Desperate to avoid a third successive defeat that would enable Ireland to celebrate a Six Nations grand slam at Twickenham Eddie Jones has named an England team showing 10 changes, including a new halfback pairing, for Saturday's finale.

Greig Laidlaw then ensured Italy was whitewashed for the fourth time in five years by nailing a penalty of his own with just over a minute left.

"And to win something captaining in that special green jersey is the stuff dreams are made of and certainly up there as probably the biggest highlight of my career".

His contribution to Ireland's Grand Slam triumph cannot be understated, with the Ulster man also scoring two tries against Italy, two against Wales and two against Scotland.

Captain Rory Best and the Irish players and coaches were due to take part in a celebratory event at the Aviva Stadium.

Yet but for Jonathan Sexton's stoppage-time drop-goal on the back of a 41-phase drive in a tournament-opening 15-13 win over France, there never would have been an Irish Grand Slam in 2018.

England, smarting from back-to-back defeats to Scotland and France, started with the bit between its teeth, but it was Ireland that drew first blood when Anthony Watson spilled a towering kick from Sexton and the alert Ringrose dotted down only five minutes in. "You can try to add to character or build on character, but there's got to be the character there to start with and they definitely demonstrated that [against England]".

"However, of course that is also mixed with a feeling of pride too".

He pointed out that Wales and Ireland do things differently, and considering that those two finished in the top two of the Six Nations, the former England boss may just have a point.

The Irish, who secured the championship a week earlier, put this result beyond doubt by halftime after spearing England with three converted tries to lead 21-5.

"That eight minutes after half-time today totally summed up this team", Schmidt said. "This team is still going to get better, but we were flying high and it's going to take some hard work and a run of good games to get back to where we need to be before the World Cup (next year in Japan)".

Met Office meteorologist Becky Mitchell said: "There will be tricky travel conditions and disruption and we want to make sure people are aware that they need to check before they set off".

"But how special was that kick from Johnny and the reward for that was this afternoon".

"He's getting faster and faster on that Zimmer frame", Schmidt quipped when asked if he would like Best to play on.

"It's something that could come to fruition sooner rather than later".

Carbery was off target with a subsequent penalty and although May went over in the corner right at the end, the game had long since been won on a famous day for Irish rugby.



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