Six Nations top try scorers
Six Nations top try scorers
The 2020 Six Nations Championship is looming on the horizon. Come February, England, Ireland, Wales, Scotland, France and Italy will go head-to-head once again. England are the current favourites to win the tournament in Six Nations 2020 betting after their strong performance at the 2019 Rugby World Cup, and it’s sure to be a tournament full of twists and turns.
It’s a competition that rugby fans, and sports fans in general, look forward to with great anticipation each year given its history and tradition. The tournament was first played in 1883 as the Home Nations Championship, before becoming the Five Nations with the addition of France. Italy joined the competition in 2000 to make it the Six Nations and the format we know and love today.
There are countless records and statistics from the tournament’s history to pore over, but here we take a look at the top try scorers who have graced the competition.
Brian O’Driscoll, Ireland (26 tries)
Irish rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll leads the all-time try-scoring list with 26. The outside centre made his international debut in a defeat to Australia in 1999 and went on to win 141 caps for Ireland in a career spanning 15 years.
O’Driscoll was at the front and centre of some memorable moments for Ireland in the Six Nations, not least when he captained the side to Ireland’s first Grand Slam success in 61 years during the 2009 edition. The triumph owed much to O’Driscoll’s try-scoring heroics, as he notched vital scores against France, England, and in the final match against Wales in Cardiff.
Ian Smith, Scotland (24 tries)
Ian Smith played for Scotland between 1924 and 1933, and his total of 24 tries remained unbeaten until O’Driscoll overtook him in 2011. In contrast to O’Driscoll’s incredible number of international appearances, Smith played only 32 test matches for Scotland, making his try total even more impressive. He helped Scotland win the Grand Slam in 1925.
Shane Williams, Wales (22 tries)
One of the best wingers in the history of the game, Shane Williams made a big mark in the Six Nations. He was instrumental in Wales winning the Grand Slam in 2005 and 2008, particularly the latter, when he led the tournament try-scoring list with six.
Despite his small stature, Williams was a formidable presence and struck fear into opposition players. In total, he scored 58 tries for Wales and leads the nation’s all-time try-scoring stats. After retiring from international rugby in 2011, Williams has since become a TV pundit to offer his insights into the sport that brought him so much success.
George North, Wales (19 tries)
The only player on our list still playing international rugby, George North has been a key figure in Welsh rugby in recent years. Even though injuries limited his playing time somewhat at the 2019 Six Nations, he still had an important role in Wales’ Grand Slam triumph. He scored two second-half tries to earn his side a win in Paris during the opening game of the tournament.
North is the epitome of the modern winger – tall, strong, and blessed with searing pace and a deftness of movement which make him a nightmare to defend against. He needs eight more Six Nations tries to better O’Driscoll’s record, which is not beyond the bounds of possibility, given that he is still only 27 years old.