Six Nations 2018: Schmidt hails Irish 'class and courage' after Grand Slam

Ireland v Scotland- Nat West Six Nations Rugby Championship

Ireland have been crowned Six Nations champions after they took down England in today's nail-biting final at Twickenham Stadium.

The try extended Ireland's lead just before half-time and put them well on the way to securing the victory they needed to complete the Grand Slam on Saturday.

He nearly scored with his first touch but was hauled down just short by Daly, but more poor English discipline allowed Conor Murray extend Ireland's lead to 24-5 with a quarter of the game remaining as he took over the kicking duties from Sexton.

Garry Ringrose and CJ Stander crossed before Jacob Stockdale plundered a record- breaking seventh touchdown of the tournament, claiming a try that was laced in irony due to the extension of the in-goal area in anticipation of snow.

Conor Murray's penalty on the hour-mark nudged Ireland, who kicked off having already won the Six Nations title, further in front at a cold and snowy Twickenham.

"I can't say enough about how everyone involved with the squad has gone about their business - we wanted to make a statement by winning something big and we have shown on the big stage what we are made of".

Italy collected the wooden spoon, for finishing last, for the fourth time in five years after losing 29-27 to Scotland, extending its losing run in the Six Nations to 17 games.

Just when the English, after 24 wins in 25 games under Jones, were looking the most risky challengers to New Zealand ahead of the 2019 World Cup, they have lost three games in a row.

I thought our players really stuck at it, but we gave them too big a lead.

"There are some world-class players in this Irish team - it's very fitting for them to win the Grand Slam". They're well coached and very well disciplined.

The loss was the first defeat under Eddie Jones at Twickenham in some 16 attempts, and just the second time in history - after France in 1981 - a Grand Slam was confirmed for any visitors to the home of English rugby.

However, Ireland did add to their tally soon after, when a set move from a lineout saw Bundee Aki break away and find CJ Stander, who grounded the ball against the left-hand upright for his side's second converted try.

Aki escaped a yellow card for a high tackle on Daly, referee Angus Garnder awarding just a penalty which England kicked to touch in the hope of a try.

England started the second half superbly and but for an exceptional tap tackle by Earls on Daly four minutes in, the winger would have been in for his second try. Farrell's missed conversion kept the Ireland lead at 14 points.

Stockdale has been in unstoppable for Ireland since making his debut last summer - he now has 11 tries in nine tests and became the first person ever to score seven tries in the Six Nations.

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