Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Canada and Russia exchange snarky tweets

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Ebola in Nigeria: First death outside of Lagos

Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns of further sanctions against Russia

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • First case of Ebola confirmed in Senegal

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • France shines in IMF list of world’s promising economists

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

  • Obama has 'no strategy yet' on potential Syria strikes

    Read more

  • Netflix to woo French with ‘House of Cards’ set in Marseille

    Read more

  • French businesses ‘hoping for a new Thatcher’

    Read more

  • Syrian refugees surpass 3 million, UN says

    Read more

  • West backs Ukrainian claims of Russian incursion

    Read more

  • Libyan PM resigns as Islamists set up rival administration

    Read more

  • UN says 43 peacekeepers captured in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • The deleted tweets of Manuel Valls

    Read more

  • Peru seizes record 6.5 tonnes of Europe-bound cocaine

    Read more

  • Pakistan army to mediate between PM, protesters

    Read more

  • PSG face Barcelona, Ajax in tough Champions League draw

    Read more

  • In pictures: Billions of locusts invade Madagascan capital

    Read more

  • Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie say ‘I do’ in France

    Read more

Ireland end Grand Slam drought with victory in Wales

Video by Hervé AMORIC

Latest update : 2009-04-02

In a nail-biting final game of the Six Nations, Ireland beat Wales 17-15 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, taking home the Grand Slam for the first time since 1948.

REUTERS - Ireland defeated Wales 17-15 in a game of dramatic and escalating tension at the Millennium Stadium on Saturday to win their first Six Nations grand slam since 1948.

Flyhalf Ronan O'Gara dropped the winning goal three minutes from time after captain Brian O'Driscoll and right wing Tommy Bowe had scored tries in quick succession to put Ireland 14-6 ahead early in the second half.

Welsh flyhalf Stephen Jones, who kicked the only points of the first half, kept the defending champions in contention with two nerveless penalties and Gavin Henson failed with an ambitious attempt from halfway.

Five minutes from time, Jones brought the home fans in the packed stadium to their feet with a dropped goal which soared between the posts to give Wales a one-point margin and take his tally to 15.

But Ireland were not to be denied. They surged back into the Welsh half, set up the ruck and O'Gara, gesturing frantically for the ball, dropped the most important goal of his illustrious career.

After the week-long buildup, both teams were understandably nervous on a warm, spring afternoon and the first half was riddled with errors, turnovers and a host of indifferent kicking from hand.


Deadlock broken

Jones finally broke the deadlock with a penalty in the 32nd minute when replacement flanker Denis Leamy was penalised inside the 22 for not rolling away from the ball.

The Welsh flyhalf was successful with a second long-range penalty two minutes from halftime after wing Luke Fitzgerald got in the way of a defender and was penalised for shepherding.

Ireland were a different side after the break. Bowe shot down the right wing in the opening minute, the ball went left and from the lineout Ireland launched a series of pick-and-drives.

The unstoppable O'Driscoll finally barged over for his fourth try of the tournament, awarded after a long wait while the television match official examined the video.

Two minutes later Bowe, who had an outstanding game, raced on to a deft O'Gara kick to seize the ball and race between the posts to score.

Although Wales had their chances, notably when scrumhalf Mike Phillips skipped through a series of tackles before being dragged down near the line and Jones failed with a penalty kick in the last minute, the force was with Ireland.

Ireland's army of supporters celebrated joyously after the final whistle.
 

Date created : 2009-03-21

COMMENT(S)