England stunned reigning Six Nations champions Ireland 32-20 to take a giant step towards reclaiming their crown with a first win in Dublin for six years.
Leading 17-13 in an epic opening-weekend title showdown that lived up to expectations, they engineered the decisive moment in the 66th minute when Henry Slade and Jonny May combined brilliantly from a scrum for Slade to touch down.
It was a try made possible by the pace of May, who along with Jack Nowell on the opposite wing was magnificent throughout an afternoon of drama and high-quality rugby.
Owen Farrell was on target with a penalty to put the game beyond Ireland’s reach as the Aviva Stadium was stormed for the first time in the Six Nations since 2013, securing Eddie Jones’ 29th win in 36 Tests.
Joe Schmidt’s Grand Slam champions fell apart in the closing stages, enabling Slade to plunder his second try, before replacement John Cooney restored some scoreboard credibility in the final seconds.
Jones’ decision to retain Elliot Daly at full-back rather than revert to the security provided by Mike Brown was partially vindicated by his involvement in both first-half tries, the second of which he finished by pouncing on an error by Jacob Stockdale.
England bristled with intent when in possession and benefited from the return of forwards Mako and Billy Vunipola and centre Manu Tuilagi, the bulldozing trio starting together for the first time due to injury.
After years spent in the treatment room rehabilitating serious groin, chest and knee injuries, Tuilagi’s first Six Nations start since 2013 was especially welcome and his duel with opposite number Bundee Aki was thunderous.
However, one moment involving Tuilagi split rugby fans right down the middle, with some calling him naughty for his actions, and others saying it was completely fine.
The incident also involved Ireland's Jacob Stockdale, and it can be seen below.
The video posted by a rugby Twitter account, quickly got nearly 300 likes and nearly 100 retweets, but it also caused a debate in the comments section.
Some were supporting Tuilagi's actions, whilst others were criticising him.
What do you make of Tuilagi's actions? Was he above board? Or should he be punished?News Now - Sport News