The 2018 6 Nations Rugby was an exciting contest full of sportsmanship moments. Here’s a few. Do tell us your sportsmanship moments if you spotted any…….
Fans Have Fun
I am in Dublin for the Ireland v Wales 6 Nations match. It’s a big game. Two exciting teams. Both with a point to prove. As I walk down to Lansdowne Road’s Aviva Stadium, I see lots of Welsh Fans proudly wearing their red shirts and waving their wonderful Welsh Dragon flags (see Welsh fans are wonderful). I also see lots of Irish leprechauns, Green jumpsuits, tricolour flags and then I see this………..French fans walking along Lansdowne Road (see the translucent glass on the Aviva Stadium on the left).
So many games in this year’s 6 Nations were so close. The very last game, between Italy and Scotland ended with Scotland winning by 2 points after being behind for most of the game. Ireland’s 83rd minute drop goal against France saved Ireland from defeat in Paris. The Ireland v Wales game was a thrilling encounter between two very good teams. It was an enthralling battle. Right up to the last few minutes, Wales could have won it. Even the French commentator and former French captain, Serge Betsen, said the best game was Ireland v Wales.
The post-match handshake is mandatory in rugby. It’s a simple, yet, great thing. Watch Irish and Welsh players line up to shake hands and occasionally embrace each other as soon as the final whistle has been blown.
Ireland v Wales – post-match handshake. The magical post-match handshake and the odd hug between players who, moments earlier were sworn opponents. Honour & Friendship prevail.
Excitement, Expectation and Magnificence
This is what it feels like when entering Lansdowne Road’s Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland, minutes before Ireland v Scotland game kicks off. Some say it’s like a ‘stairway to heaven’. And two smiling stewards welcome us all into a wonderful, almost mystical event.
Opposition Fans Celebrate The Match Together
The great thing about rugby is the camaraderie that exists between opposing fans. Here some Irish and Scottish fans having a chat and some fun after the game
Entering Twickenham Stadium
Having beaten France, Italy, Wales & Scotland, Ireland marched on Twickenham to try and win the Triple Crown and Grand Slam (having already secured the 6 Nations Championship). Fantastic game.
Magical Moment from England’s Fullback
On the 77th minute England’s Mike Brown was about score a try for England to open the game up with 3 mins left on the clock, when he was brilliantly tackled by Ireland’s Sean Cronin pushing him into touch. The referee called for video help. Mike Brown sat on the ground – knowing he’d been tackled into touch. He knew it. The crowd didn’t but Brown did. As Cronin got up, Brown, still sitting on the grass, gave him a friendly tap on the backside, congratulating Cronin on the exquisite tackle, which some say, finally secured Ireland’s Grand Slam.
Players, Substitutes and Backroom People are All Part of the Team
After receiving the Nat West 6 Nations Championship Trophy on the podium, the Irish captain, Rory Best, stood on the podium with his arm around Sean Cronin (who competes with RoryBest for the same hooker position every game for several years now). Even between internal competitors, there was a great feeling of unity and warmth of friendship amongst the whole squad. Rory Best also acknowledge d during his speech, that it was the squad i.e. the players, the subs and also the backroom team that helped Ireland to win the Triple Crown, 6 Nations Championship and the Grand Slam 2018.
Everyone works together in a team or squad
English Coach Congratulates Irish Team
Even the England manager, Eddie Jones, who had previously made some prematch unsporting comments, redeemed himself by openly apologising and subsequently, immediately after the match, he congratulated Ireland graciously when he said ‘Ireland were very worthy Grand Slam Winners’. This meant a lot to all the Irish fans.
A Pure Act Of Kindness, Generosity & Friendship
So, Ireland won the Grand Slam beating England 24 – 15 at Twickenham. It was a special night for all those associated with Ireland because it was St Patrick’s day too. There would have been many memorable pictures taken from the weekend but none more special than this one. Peter O’Mahony gave his 6 nations medal to young fan Jennifer Malone. Jennifer is a big fan and attends matches and training sessions whenever she can. What a reward for her loyalty!
English Fans Congratulate Irish Fans
All the English players and fans were outstanding in their warm congratulations that went on all night long, in arguably our finest St Patrick’s Day.
England fans celebrate Irealnd’s victory with Irish fans all over London