AFTER last night's win for Wales over France there are matches today featuring Italy v Scotland (1.30pm) and England v Ireland (4pm).

Despite three tactical changes to the Scottish team by coach Scott Johnson Italy are 4-7 favourites with Paddy Power to have a home win.

For punters looking to back Scotland (and maybe I'm the only one), Paddy Power go 9-4 on the visitors to Rome beating Italy by 1-12 points.

Although Ireland are the unbeaten Championship leaders and favourites to win the Six Nations at 13-8, England have a good record at home against them and the Irish side are slight underdogs for this game at 11-10.

England’s David Wilson is to replace the injured Dan Cole at tighthead and Mike Brown and Jonny May are both 12-1 to be first try corer.

Tensions will be high with Ireland looking to secure the Triple Crown, with odds at 6-4 for them to do so.

Paddy Power have a special offer in place for all Six Nations games over the weekend – if your first try scorer scores again they will double your odds.

Former Scotland legend Gavin Hastings called last night's game spot, taking Wales -3.5 points, and here's thoughts on today's matches courtesy of unibet.

He says: “Scotland produced a disappointing performance against England at Murrayfield last time out and they’ll be in for a tough examination at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome.

“This has all the ingredients for an incredibly close game. Italy have done well against Scotland in recent times – the Scots have won only one of their last seven visits to Italy.

“Based on that you have to say it’s going to be tough for Scotland. But I’m going to surprise a few people and predict a draw here.

“The last four results between the sides in Italy have been 13-10 to Scotland, 23-20 to Italy, 16-12 to Italy and 13-6 to Italy so there’s not been a wide winning margin of late. It’s going to be very close and the odds of 20-1 with unibet on a draw make it very good value.

“Ireland are travelling to England looking to secure the Triple Crown and that, in itself, is a huge motivator.

“And all credit to them, they’ve ripped apart Scotland and Wales and are fully deserving of their status as the team to beat. They are the form team, of that there can be no doubt.

“Twickenham is a difficult place to play and it will be one hell of a game. England were unlucky to lose against France and, from what I’ve seen of them, have the makings of a very good side.

“Ireland’s backs are more dangerous than England's and, if they can win enough ball, they’ll have the edge. I believe that’s where the game will be won and lost, however England’s forwards are certainly capable of causing Ireland problems.

“A victory for Ireland at Twickenham would set them on their way to the Six Nations title and would be a fitting send-off for some of Ireland’s veteran warriors, particularly Paul O’Connell and Brian O’Driscoll, who will go down in history as two of rugby’s greatest ever players. They’ve each had stellar careers but will be intent on sparking one last significant triumph.

“It’s going to be very close, with certainly no more than four or five points in it. If Ireland can get the Triple Crown under their belt then they’ll be in the driving seat for this Six Nations and I’m backing them to clinch a narrow win at 2.5 with unibet.”

Hastings' tips

Italy v Scotland draw
(20-1, unibet)

(6-4, unibet)


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