|Ireland (14) 26|
|Tries: Sheehan, Healy, Van der Flier, Murray Cons: Sexton 3|
|Scotland (5) 5|
Ireland’s pack starred as they beat Scotland to clinch their first Triple Crown in four years but their Six Nations title hopes were later dashed when France defeated England.
Andy Farrell’s side would have been crowned champions had England beaten France on Saturday night, but the French were too strong as they lifted the trophy.
Ireland’s victory over Scotland came courtesy of tries from Dan Sheehan, Cian Healy, Josh van der Flier and Conor Murray.
Pierre Schoeman registered Scotland’s only score shortly before half-time.
The defeat ends another disappointing tournament for Gregor Townsend’s side – one that started so brightly with a brilliant win over England – in which they finished fourth.
Trailing Ireland by three points in the standings going into their Paris encounter, France knew any manner of victory over the English would secure what was a first Grand Slam since 2010.
Farrell wins first trophy as head coach
The Triple Crown, Ireland’s sixth since the turn of the century, is Farrell’s first piece of silverware since being elevated from assistant coach to the top job after the 2019 World Cup.
During his time at the helm he has overseen the reinvention of Ireland’s attack, which although initially a bumpy transition has blossomed into a recognisable and fruitful system.
While not always as free-flowing, it has along with an aggressive defensive structure yielded 12 wins from Ireland’s past 13 games.
Against Scotland it was for large parts an imperfect display as they struggled to find the edge and stretch the visiting defence with any regularity.
There was however still enough quick ball and aggressive carrying to see the hosts take control of the game in the opening half.
After conceding an incredible six penalties at Twickenham last week eyes were on the Irish scrum, which held up well barring one Scottish win late in the half.
Front rows Sheehan and Healy provided the finishing touches to the two opening tries, with the hooker peeling away from a rolling maul for the opener after 17 minutes.
Healy burrowed over for the second 10 minutes later after strong carries from Sheehan and Jack Conan.
While Ireland enjoyed the better of the opening half, the last 10 minutes belonged to Scotland and provided them with a route back into the contest as Schoeman profited from some excellent counter-rucking to put his side on the board.
Scotland arrived in Dublin under a cloud following revelations that six players including captain Stuart Hogg and star fly-half Finn Russell were disciplined for breaching team protocols by visiting a bar last weekend.
Hogg retained his place in the starting line-up while Russell was demoted to the bench with Blair Kinghorn handed the number 10 jersey.
The visitors may feel the margin of defeat does not accurately reflect their contribution to the contest, and indeed they did produce flashes of promise but too often robbed themselves of the chance to build momentum with poor decision making.
Darcy Graham and Schoeman made big breaks in the early exchanges that ultimately came to nothing, while both Graham and Kyle Steyn botched promising kick chases by running directly into the Irish receiver.
When they put together multiple phases they were dangerous, with Schoeman scrambling over to bring them back into the contest after ferocious counter-rucking saw them win possession in the Irish half.
Nine minutes into the second half they had a golden chance to bring themselves within two points of Ireland when Hogg burst clear on the wing and opted to go for the line himself as opposed to passing inside only for Hugo Keenan to produce a sensational try-saving tackle and drag the Scottish captain into touch.
The close shave appeared to refocus Ireland, who moved up the pitch and knocked on the door for 10 minutes before Jamison Gibson-Park’s smart inside ball sent Van der Flier crashing across the line.
Given their superior points difference over France, a bonus point was inconsequential to Ireland’s title challenge but still they pushed for a fourth score.
When replacement Scotland scrum-half Ben White was sent to the sin-bin for a deliberate knock on with two minutes remaining, Ireland threw caution to the wind one last time and found a gap for Murray to dart through for the final score.
Ireland: Keenan; Hansen, Ringrose, Aki, Lowe; Sexton, Gibson-Park; Healy, Sheehan, Furlong, Beirne, Henderson, Doris, Van der Flier, Conan.
Replacements: Herring, Kilcoyne, Bealham, Treadwell, O’Mahony, Murray, Carbery, Henshaw.
Scotland: Hogg; Graham, Harris, Johnson, Steyn; Kinghorn, Price; M Fagerson, Watson, Darge; Gilchrist, J Gray; Z Fagerson, Turner, Schoeman.
Replacements: Brown, Dell, Nel, Skinner, Bayliss, White, Russell, Bennett.