"Wretched kicking" - Four players who underperformed in the Six Nations this weekend - Ruck

“Wretched kicking” – Four players who underperformed in the Six Nations this weekend

We examine five players who struggled to deliver during the fourth round of the 2024 Guinness Six Nations, while England, Ireland, and France secured wins.

Starting off the round on Saturday, Italy held on despite intense late pressure to secure their first Six Nations home win since 2013 as Scotland’s title hopes were all but ended by an abject second-half collapse in Rome.

Next up, Marcus Smith kicked a last-gasp drop-goal as England stunned Ireland and ended their chance to win back-to-back Grand Slams in a Six Nations thriller at Twickenham.

Sunday’s spectacle belonged to France, as they delivered a masterclass in attacking rugby, overpowering a valiant yet winless Wales side in Cardiff.

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#1. George Ford (England)

Telegraph 5/10: “Beautiful with ball in hand, wretched with the boot. Missing seven points felt crucial and kicking from hand was also not on the money.”

Rugby World 5/10: “Put some nice width on the ball, particularly with the miss passes to a rampaging Ellis Genge in midfield. However, he was guilty of missing a very kickable penalty attempt in the first half and also had a drop goal charged down. Mixed bag.”

RUCK 6.5/10: “A frustrating day personally for Ford, yet he would be delighted to see his side turn the fortunes around in the second half. Had his drop gaol attempt charged down and missed the 30th min pen from the Ireland 10m line. Ford was offside along with Ollie Chessum at 38 minutes, as England worked tirelessly to clear their lines. Missed another conversion after Furbank’s try, as Owen Farrell watched on in the Twickenham stands.”

Planet Rugby 5/10: “Not his best display for his country as he battled on defence, especially when Aki ran in his channel, while he also had a forgetful day off the kicking tee, which nearly cost his team this match. Was eventually yanked off on the hour-mark, with Marcus Smith coming on to replace him.”

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