What the Six Nations sides have been doing in the fallow week
It is a Six Nations fallow week. Some of you will be climbing the walls with no Tests this weekend.
Teams have been busy, though. England had two training sessions with Georgia. Before their work-outs, on Tuesday and Wednesday, Eddie Jones said his team were delighted to lock horns with “the biggest, ugliest, strongest scrum pack in the world.”
From the footage and pictures that came from this particular face-off, it looks like these scrums were full-blooded. Afterwards, Jones said: “The boys learnt a number of different things (from the session). They had the superiority early on and we came back well. It was an excellent session for us. They really enjoyed it.”
Many teams decided this was the best time to open up sessions to the public. England had one at Twickenham, while Ireland trained against their U20s side at Dubarry Park, the home of Buccaneers RFC in Athlone.
It was spotted there that Tadhg Furlong and Iain Henderson were briefly put through their paces, not taking part in the squad session, while James Ryan was not spotted at all. Head coach Joe Schmidt expects all three to make a speedy recovery, though Henderson and Ryan are seen as progressing a little better than Furlong.
Related: A Six Nations injury update
Scotland also held an open training session away from their usual headquarters. The team headed down to Galashiels, Gregor Townsend’s hometown, to do their run-out.
What about the French? Well, the word ‘calamity’ springs to mind. In the aftermath of a night out following their loss to Scotland, nine players – including the free-scoring Teddy Thomas – were dropped for “inappropriate behaviour.” The measure is only in place for the game against Italy in Marseille next Friday.
Meanwhile, in Italy something entirely more official was happening. Head coach Conor O’Shea was present for a summit between the two Guinness Pro14 franchises and the clubs from Italy’s Eccellenza, to discuss a range of topics.
Does any of this whet your appetite for Six Nations action at all? Probably not.
If you want brilliant, timeless Six Nations content to enjoy this weekend, why not run out and buy the latest issue of Rugby World magazine, our six Nations special issue?
The match action kicks back into gear next week. And you know there will be plenty more to talk about!