Ireland set sights on Triple Crown
March 15, 2010
Jamie Heaslip scored Ireland's winning try at Murrayfield in 2009 © Getty Images
Seamus Byrne Sandy Carmichael Eugene Davy Alan Duggan Mike Gibson Gavin Hastings Scott Hastings David Humphreys Roy Laidlaw Bill Maclagan Brendan Mullin Brian O'Driscoll Ronan O'Gara Chris Paterson Bill Stewart
Ireland's Triple Crown-decider against Scotland in Dublin this weekend will be the 124th meeting of the sides since their first encounter in February 1877.
Scotland lead the series by 63 wins to 55. The last of the five draws was in 1994. The first of the two matches staged in 1885 was abandoned with Scotland leading, but the sides agreed to a replay a fortnight later, provided the outcome of the abandoned match should not stand as a win for Scotland. Both games carry Test status.
The teams have only met at Croke Park once before, when Ireland were comfortable 34-13 winners thanks to a Tommy Bowe brace. This game will be the last Ireland Test staged at the home of the Gaelic Athletics Association (GAA) before the opening of the Aviva Stadium.
Ireland's 44-22 win at Lansdowne Road in 2000 and Scotland's 38-10 Murrayfield win in 1997 are the highest scores recorded by the teams in this series. The best winning margin (30 points) in the matches was established in Ireland's 36-6 success at Murrayfield in 2003.
Ireland's David Humphreys set the record for the highest individual score in a match contributing 26 points at Murrayfield in 2003. Chris Paterson holds the corresponding Scottish record with 18 at Murrayfield in 2007.
William Stewart, a Tasmanian-born wing who played for Scotland, scored a record four tries in the 1913 fixture. Three players have scored try hat-tricks for Ireland: Eugene Davy (1930), Séamus Byrne (1953) and Brian O'Driscoll in 2002.
Ronan O'Gara is the leading overall scorer in the matches. He has scored 109 points for Ireland in 11 matches since 2000. Chris Paterson overtook Gavin Hastings as the leading Scottish scorer in the series with a 15-point haul at Murrayfield last season.
Scotland's Roy Laidlaw scored most tries in the matches: six in nine games between 1980 and 1988. Alan Duggan (1967 to 1971) and Brendan Mullin (1985 to 1995) each scored five for Ireland in this fixture.
Mike Gibson holds the record for most appearances in the series, playing 14 times between 1964 and 1979. He was capped eight times as a centre, five times as a fly-half and once as a replacement wing. Sandy Carmichael, Scott Hastings, Bill MacLagan and Paterson appeared 11 times for Scotland.
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