Guinness 6 Nations 2022
It’s Guinness 6 Nations 2022 Time, the 23rd championship in it’s current format which will again be contested between England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, and Wales national teams! Who will be victorious in 2022?
With only a year to go before the 2023 Rugby World Cup, pressure is building on teams who had a mediocre 2021. The Six Nations is traditionally the first international rugby contest of the year. This is exciting as it provides fans and competitors alike a view on what could be expected from the competing teams as the year progresses.
There is more than pride at stake. 2021 Champions Wales know that France, Ireland, and Scotland all came close last year and will be hungry to claim the top spot this year. England had a mediocre competition the last time around. Anything but success for the 13-time champions will be a disappointment. All teams barring Italy had a successful 2021 Autumn International campaign with wins over top opposition. The team which can best manage to carry this momentum through the Six Nations will be the one sitting at the top of the log come the 19th of March 2022.
Recent Guinness 6 Nations History
In the last 10 years, three teams have dominated the Six Nations. The spoils have gone to either England, Ireland, or Wales in this period. Wales have had the better rub of the green recently, with 4 victories since 2012. The most recent of which coming last year. Ireland and England both with 3 a piece have been equally successful. However, the Irish have not won overall since 2018, while England were winners in the 2020 competition. Neither Italy nor Scotland have ever managed to win the title.
While it is difficult envisioning Italy any higher than in the wooden spoon position, it is a different story for Scotland. It is widely believed that the current Scottish outfit has perhaps their best ever chance in achieving a top result. French fans haven’t had much to shout about for a few years. Their last title came as far back as in 2010. However, out of all the 6 nations in contention, the most exciting prospect currently is arguably the youthful side coming out of France.
Current Form and Predictions
The defending champions Wales are one of the more consistent teams in the Six Nations. Having won the title on 12 occasions (only one less that England), they are always one of the favourites. The 2022 competition will be no different. Captained by experienced flyhalf Dan Biggar, the Welsh outfit will have to improve on their consistency following the 2021 Autumn Internationals. While they got the better of Australia in their final game of 2021, the losses to South Africa and New Zealand in the weeks prior would have left a sour taste within the squad. Missing incumbents Alun Wyn Jones, Taulupe Faletau and George North through injury means that some new faces need to step up and make a name for themselves.
England are the most successful team in Six Nations history. This means that they are always considered favourites even if recent form does not marry this sentiment. Eddie Jones’s team had a torrid 2021 competition. Winning only two matches left them in the unfamiliar position of 5th on the log. The 2019 Rugby World Cup runners-up however had a successful period at the back end of the year. Beating both Australia and South Africa on consecutive weekends is no mean feat. These victories will put them in a prime position as they begin their Guinness 6 Nations 2022 campaign. While Owen Farrell misses out due to injury, there is plenty of experience within the squad. This will provide the necessary support for the largely youthful squad selected. If England can pick up where they left off in November, they will be a difficult team to beat.
Mid-table finishers in 2021 Ireland have a lot to prove this year. After losing their first 2 matches, they did win 3 in a row, beating England in their final game. However, the team will need to be more consistent in this year’s competition if they wish to challenge for the title again. Lead by the evergreen Johnny Sexton, the Irish team will hope their experienced squad members provide the platform for success when they begin the competition. Andy Farrell’s team finished 2021 on a high after claiming a historic win over the indomitable New Zealand. If they can replicate the intensity displayed in that match, their recent title drought may be over.
This could be Scotland’s year! After a brilliant 2021, the Scots will believe that they can win the 6 Nations 2022. Narrow losses against Wales and Ireland in the 2021 competition will have left Scottish fans wondering ‘what could have been’? Victories over England and France show that this team is capable of big results on a consistent basis. With a win against Australia in the November international period, the Scots finished the year on a high. For the 2022 Six nations, Stuart Hogg captains the squad. Exciting players Finn Russel, Ali Price and Duhan van der Merwe are all present in what should be a competitive squad.
Having not won a game in the 2021 Six Nations, Italy can only hope that things go better in 2022. While Italy has no realistic chance of winning the competition, they can rather focus on winning a match at least. The Italians last won in the Six Nations back in 2015 when they beat Scotland in the final pool game. Kieran Crowley’s team will have a tough time as there doesn’t seem to be another standout weak nation within the competition. Italy desperately wants to be taken seriously as a rugby nation- the Guinness 6 Nations 2022 is a perfect platform to show that they are not satisfied being the whipping boys any longer.
France Six Nations Chances
After their second placed finish in 2021, winning is the only goal for the team from France this year. The excitement around French rugby is palpable again, and one feels that this team is only going to improve. Beating New Zealand in Paris at the end of last year will provide hope to this exciting French outfit. This team appears to be shedding itself of the inconsistent mantra that has plagued French rugby for years. Playmakers such as Romain Ntamack and 2021 World Rugby player of the year Antoine Dupont are integral to this team’s success. If the French get off to a winning start in this years Guinness 6 Nations, the rest of the competing nations will be very worried indeed.
Guinness 6 Nations 2022 Summary
International rugby begins each year with the Six Nations. All eyes will be on who is performing well, especially with the next Rugby World Cup a mere year away. Will it be more of the same from Wales? Can the French live up to all the hype? Or will Scotland finally take home the title? We can’t wait to see who casts the first stone in the Guinness 6 Nations 2022!
With so much on the line for all the teams involved, rugby also provides the perfect opportunity to place a few bets on. Be it pre-match bets on the outright winners, overall tournament winner or if you prefer, why not bet in-play with some of the top online sportsbooks in South Africa.
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If you are new to the Six Nations rugby tournament, why not read our article where we explain the format, history and so much more.