If you believe the legend, the Scottish and Irish foes have been at each other’s side since time began. Folklore suggests that long ago the great giants of Benandonner and Fionn mac Cumhaill went to war, tossing land across the Irish Sea and crushing the passes.

There’s no need for a long story to embellish the legend before this final Edinburgh encounter. both Scotland And Ireland We’ve endured many hard times in this championship, but faced it in poor health at Murrayfield, the iterations being rightfully considered perhaps the best each nation has produced in a generation.

First and second they face each other Six Nations rankings, of course, by points difference. Scotland showed they can take on the Six Nations class in Paris two weeks ago by closely leading France with clever in-game adjustments to counter their strength. A stout loss didn’t come as any particular consolation after the Grand Slam quests went astray.

Losing to Ireland would result in a very familiar derailment of Scottish optimism. However Gregor TownsendThe side will be ready to revisit for the second of the two big, backed by the strength of the Murrayfield crowd. A rarely procured Triple Crown would be enough reward for another encouraging campaign and maintain genuine interest in the championship.

Even a bonus points win wouldn’t have been enough to completely seal Ireland into the Six Nations crown, but visitors would only need a single point home to England in the final weekend. Of course, in this scenario Ireland would be on the hunt for the Grand Slam.

not this Andy FarrellThe team is just looking at its last game. “Given the threat we received this weekend with a Scotland team that played very well, it would probably be naive for us to start talking about a Grand Slam or something like that,” the Irish winger said. Josh van der Flier This week.

“I think it’s going to be a big challenge against a really good side. Obviously that’s the goal of every team that comes in, you want to win all your games, but this week is going to be such a big challenge that you can’t go beyond that.”

Given a fallow week to be right, it’s coming back Tadhg Furlong playmaking axis to strengthen Ireland at the forefront johnny sexton And Garry Ringrose reunite to print beautiful patterns that continue to prove very effective.

Stuart Hogg Scotland reveals its face. A strangely peripheral figure Fin Russell– The tournament’s escapades so far, the rowdy half-and-half, his first friend would have appreciated a man’s turn to full-threat for such a long time – Hogg has been solid, but this could be a situation that calls for a return to the best-destroyed gouge. Ireland took their last defeat to Scotland in 2017.

Russell and Hogg could devastate Ireland if their partnership accelerates

(Getty Images)

While van der Flier doesn’t hesitate to look needlessly ahead, the Paris soiree of the two sides in early October must have already slipped into minds. Scotland and Ireland will be the rivals of Group B. World Cupand with South Africa a third live contender in the group, that final pool weekend meeting could be decisive.

Ireland’s poor tournament record will continue to mutter discouragingly in the background until Farrell proves his side stupid. Maybe it won’t be as simple as it could be.

The early World Cup draw means even beating Group B ahead of the Scots and South Africa will leave a quarter-final matchup with New Zealand or France. A four-year cycle of so much progress could ultimately result in the last eight disappointments. For Scotland, which has conquered both Paris and Twickenham in the last two years, they may find themselves again in the qualifying rounds.

It’s nothing to be particularly worried about right now. It’s easy to look ahead when the World Cup steers this way every four years, but the success of these two teams demonstrates the importance of reliving the good moment in which they find themselves. Careful plans to reach the top for the World Cup can easily go awry when tournaments arrive, so it’s important to celebrate successes in between.

A win would be significant for both: Scotland has never beaten the best in the world with Ireland’s Grand Slam goal clear since the organization then known as the IRB first decided on a ranking algorithm in 2006. Forget ancient mythology – this is a real Celtic conflict to be savored.

Italy – Wales

The prevailing theme every time we saw Kieran Crowley’s daredevil Italians during this tournament was that they were going to beat someone during this Six Nations – well, now it’s time to prove it true. Italy couldn’t have wished for a better opportunity to turn its promise into progress, with another modified Welsh team to greet their Roman hosts.

Perhaps further tinkering speaks to how little Warren Gatland can claim to know about an increasingly uneasy Welsh team heading towards disbandment.

Italy looks like a better team than Wales if they play to the potential shown in the first three rounds. Yet Italy is so familiar with being the oppressed side that the swell of hope for victory entering the encounter can still be overwhelming. A loss to Georgia last July perhaps speaks to the challenge on Crowley’s side when he wears a rare favorites tag, but it’s an extraordinary chance to put on an extraordinary performance and win.