England out to change recent history
August 24, 2011
Jonathan Sexton proved to be the difference between the two sides back in March © Getty Images
England will be going out against Ireland on Saturday hoping to put to bed a poor run of results in Dublin.
The match will be both sides last warm-up Test prior to the World Cup and the rivalry dates back to 1875. The fixture is the second oldest on the international calendar - behind England v Scotland - and England lead the all-time stats with 70 wins to Ireland's 45. The last of the eight drawn games was in 1968.
It will be England's second visit to the Aviva Stadium and they will be hoping for a change of luck having lost on five of their last six visits to the Irish capital the most recent of which was their 24-8 loss to Ireland back in March. The result ended England's Grand Slam hosts while it racked up Ireland's 29th win on home soil against their rivals.
England scored a record seven tries at a windy Lansdowne Road in their 36-14 victory in 1938. Their skipper that day, Peter Cranmer, was however relieved of the captaincy for the rest of the season. Ireland's best try total is five: in 1905 at Cork, and in freezing conditions in Dublin in 1947, when they won 22-0.
England's Paul Grayson set the record for most points in a match, scoring 23 at Twickenham in 1996. Ollie Campbell established the points record for Ireland by scoring 21 in Dublin in 1983 and Ronan O'Gara matched that achievement at Croke Park in 2007.
The only try hat-tricks scored in the series were by Henry Taylor for England at Manchester in 1881 and Chris Oti at Twickenham in 1988. A dozen Irishmen have scored two tries in a match - Shane Horgan's brace at Twickenham in 2006 being the most recent instance.
The overall record for scoring most tries in the fixture belongs to Rory Underwood, who scored seven for England between 1984 and 1996.
Jonny Wilkinson is the leading overall scorer in the fixture with 97 for England in nine games between 1998 (when he made his Test debut as an eighteen-year-old) and 2010. Ronan O'Gara holds the Irish record for the series with 86 points from 10 matches.
Mike Gibson, who played in 15 successive matches for Ireland (1964-78), set the record for most appearances in the games. Rory Underwood appeared 14 times for England.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"These little deft touches, the nuances O'Driscoll has perfected are what Ireland will miss most." Tom Hamilton on Brian O'Driscoll's final Test in Dublin
Last year's thrashing at the hands of Wales was not the first time England have fallen to their rivals. Scrum Sevens looks at whether they have bounced back the following year
With just two rounds left in the 2014 championship, the intensity cranks up a notch at Twickenham. Tom Hamilton previews the weekend's action
"I had a perfect record against England as did a few other Welshmen. England always seemed to bring the best out of us." John Taylor on the age-old rivalry