News Update


Ireland wins 29-10. England’s Billy Vunipola is sent off, as the Irish score five tries.

England forward Billy Vunipola was sent off as Ireland scored five tries in a comfortable win to gain significant momentum ahead of the World Cup.

Bundee Aki, Garry Ringrose, James Lowe, Mack Hansen, and Keith Earls all played for the world’s best team.

Vunipola was punished for a high tackle seconds before Ireland’s third touchdown.

England, who were missing captain Owen Farrell due to his ongoing disciplinary saga, responded with a late score from Kyle Sinckler.

England’s number eight Vunipola was issued a yellow card for a challenge on Ireland prop Andrew Porter, but it was increased to a red after a review, meaning the forward’s World Cup dreams are now in jeopardy, much like his skipper Farrell’s.

Vunipola joins Farrell in receiving a red card.
The issue involving Farrell following the England fly-half’s ‘bunker’ red card against Wales last week had dominated the build-up to the game, and now head coach Steve Borthwick risks losing Vunipola as well.

With Farrell out of the team for Saturday’s game due to an appeal hearing on Tuesday, George Ford was given the opportunity to shine as the playmaker.

Ford had not started an England game since 2021, but the Sale Sharks fly-half came off the bench to score the game-winning points against Wales and continued where he left off in Dublin, edging the visitors ahead with an early penalty.

Ireland, who had a “clunky” win against Italy a week ago, were subdued in the opening exchanges despite the head coach bringing back several key players.

However, they exploded into life for the game’s first try, with Aki sprinting under the posts after a fantastic Josh van der Flier tip-on sent Peter O’Mahony through the defense.

While Ireland exhibited obvious symptoms of fatigue, England only managed one entrance into the home side’s 22 during a fragmented first half, with Ford also missing a second kick at goal that would have brought the visitors back within one.

Ireland experienced mixed emotions at the end of the first half. While the sight of hooker Dan Sheehan hobbling off will be concerning given Ronan Kelleher’s previous absence, the hosts were able to extend their lead in first-half added time thanks to Ringrose’s score.

Hugo Keenan, Cian Prendergast, and O’Mahony were all engaged before Mack Hansen picked out the centre with a superb crossfield kick, allowing Ringrose to avoid a couple of last-ditch tackles and send Ireland nine points ahead before the break.

Ireland thrives while England withers.

Following a low-key start to the second half, England’s fortunes deteriorated as they failed to capitalise on last week’s victory against Wales.

Ireland immediately placed England under pressure after Vunipola was sent off the field, and their efforts resulted in a third try when Ross Byrne floated a pass out wide to Lowe, who had begun the move.

The bunker review system immediately changed Vunipola’s yellow to a red after Byrne missed his conversion, compounding England’s problems in Dublin.

Ireland extended their advantage thanks to the superb Hansen, and when Sinckler responded for England, Earls had a fairytale moment.

The Munster defender came off the bench to become Ireland’s eighth centurion and put the finishing touches on a comfortable victory as he stormed over to mark his 100th cap in great style, prompting the Aviva crowd’s loudest roar of the evening.

Following their 12th consecutive Test victory, Ireland will attempt to complete a clean sweep of warm-up game victories when they meet Samoa in Bayonne next week.

England, on the other hand, will be anxiously awaiting the outcome of Farrell’s appeal hearing on Tuesday before deciding on Vunipola’s destiny.


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