TSZ Predicts The Six Nations – Week Five

17th Mar 2017 by TSZ

Last weekend’s Six Nations action saw England not only dominate Scotland but also confirm themselves as 2017 champions. In what was England’s most convincing win of the tournament so far, they manged to score seven tries and beat Scotland by 40 points. Wales defeated Ireland at the Principality Stadium, making it a 50/50 competition so far for them, with two wins and two losses. France were victorious against the Italians and continued to prevent them from gaining any bonus points. Italy are the only side in this year’s Six Nations to not receive a losing bonus point or attacking bonus point.

Last week’s predictions of the winners and bonus points were correct for the France vs Italy game. Only the predicted winner was correct for the England vs Scotland game, and in the Ireland vs Wales match, the winner of the game, predicted score margin and bonus points were incorrect. 

Let’s have a look to see how this weekend’s games may pan out and see if the data (collected from 2000) and the Six Nation’s matches so far help us get any closer to predicting the correct winner and scoreline.


  • Scotland have beaten Italy in 10 out of their 17 matches in the Six Nations.
  • Eight out of the 17 matches have been decided by a margin of seven points or fewer.
  • In eight matches, the winner of the first half has gone on to win overall, with Scotland managing this six times.
  • Italy have won three out of four matches that were tied at half-time.
  • Italy have been winning in the first half and gone on to lose on three occasions.
  • Scotland have been winning in the first half and gone on to lose on two occasions.


  • Scotland have beaten Italy in six out of eight games at Murrayfield in the Six Nations.
  • Italy triumphed 22-19 when the pair last met here in the Six Nations.


  • Scotland have scored more tries than Italy in seven out of their 17 Six Nations matches, and scored the same amount on five occasions.
  • Scotland have scored four or more tries in two matches against Italy.
  • Italy have only scored four or more tries once against Scotland.

Other potential contributing factors to the result of this game may be:

  • Scotland have only made one change this weekend, with Ross Ford replacing Fraser Brown.
  • Hogg, Seymour and Wilson have all been given the go ahead after head knocks last weekend.
  • Russell, Jones and Gray have also been cleared after injury doubts from the weekend.
  • Italy have made four changes to face Scotland. Biagi, Mbanda, Gega and Benvenuti all join the starting XV.
  • Injured Michele Campagnaro and Simone Favaro do not feature in the squad.

From the data above, we predict that:
Scotland have had a mixed Six Nations so far, with two wins against Ireland and Wales and two losses, one to France and last week’s heavy defeat to England. Italy have had a disappointing campaign with four out of four defeats, but have at times competed with the other nations.

Based on the statistics and this year’s performances so far, Scotland are set for another win against Italy by more than seven points. 

Taking this predicted scoreline into consideration, the statistics suggest that neither team will pick up a losing bonus point or score four or more tries.


  • France have beaten Wales in nine out of their 17 matches in the Six Nations.
  • Wales have won the last five matches between the two teams in the Six Nations.
  • When France have beaten Wales, Wales have kept them within a seven-point losing margin in five out of nine matches.
  • In 12 out of 17 matches, the winner of the first half has gone on to win overall.
  • Each team has been drawing at half time and gone on to win once. 
  • Wales have been winning in the first half and gone on to lose in only one match, whereas France have surrendered a half-time lead on two occasions.


  • The head-to-head score at the Stade de France in the Six Nations is 4-4, with Wales winning the last two meetings here.


  • Both Wales and France have scored the most tries in six matches each.
  • They have scored the same number of tries in five matches.
  • Only once has a team scored four or more tries in this fixture, when Wales managed this back in 2001.

Other potential contributing factors to the result of this game may be:

  • France have only made one change to their starting line-up, as Sebastien Vahaamahina replaces Julien Le Devedec.
  • France have also made three changes to their replacements.
  • Wales have named an unchanged side for the third consecutive game.

From the data above, we predict that:
Historically, there is little to separate these two nations when they face each other in the Six Nations. The performances of both teams in this year’s Six Nations has left France ahead of Wales by one attacking bonus point for scoring four tries against Italy last week. Both teams will be looking to finish on a high and they have a chance of claiming second spot in the table, so we expect a close affair.

Based on the recent statistics from the last five years and last weekend’s performance against Ireland, we are tipping Wales to win by a small margin. More specifically, we believe that the losing team stands a good chance of staying within a seven-point margin, thus earning a bonus point. 

The statistics suggest that neither team will score four or more tries.


  • Ireland have beaten England in nine out of their 17 matches in the Six Nations.
  • England won last year’s game between the two teams by 11 points.
  • Eight matches have been kept within a seven-point losing margin; six of those by England as the losing side. 
  • 2009 was the only year that the first half result differed from the final outcome. In all of the other games, the winner of the first half has gone on to win the match overall.


  • Ireland have beaten England in six out of their eight home meetings (matches played at the Aviva Stadium, Croke Park and Lansdowne Road).


  • England have scored more tries than Ireland in six out of 17 games.
  • Ireland have scored more tries than England in five out of 17 games.
  • In six games, both teams have scored the same amount of tries.
  • Ireland have only once scored four or more tries against England.
  • England have scored four or more tries in three matches against Ireland, but all three occasions were before 2004.

Other potential contributing factors to the result of this game may be:

  • Billy Vunipola and Anthony Watson return to the staring XV in the only two changes made by England from last weekend.
  • Ireland have made three changes to their team from last weekend; two determined by injury and one altercation to the starting line-up.
  • A huge blow for Ireland is Scrum-half Conor Murray being replaced by Kieran Marmion due to a should injury sustained in last weekend’s defeat to Wales.
  • Rob Kearney is replaced by Payne at full back due to a knee injury.
  • Henderson replaces Devin Toner in the starting XV, with Toner taking his place on the bench.

From the data above, we predict that:
England have had a fantastic Six Nations so far, winning all of their matches. They have already won the tournament as they are eight points ahead of Ireland who are second, however, they will have their sights set on a Grand Slam. Ireland are on equal points with France and just one ahead of both Wales and Scotland, so will be wanting to get as much as they can out of their final game against England.

Previous Six Nations statistics show a very close win/loss ratio between the two teams, however, based on current performances, England are set to win this weekend by more than seven points.

Taking this predicted scoreline into consideration, the statistics suggest that Ireland won’t pick up a losing bonus point and neither team will score four or more tries.

We may already know the winner of this year’s Six Nations, but there are still matters to be settled. Only points difference separates second and third place, with fourth and fifth place only one point behind. Even with the title in the bag, England will be fighting hard for the Triple Crown, Grand Slam and a record-breaking 19th straight win to finish off what has been a thrilling tournament.

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