1973 Five Nations Championship

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1973 Five Nations Championship
Date 13 January - 14 April 1973
Countries  England
Tournament statistics
Champions  England,  Ireland,  France,
 Scotland and  Wales
Calcutta Cup  England
Matches played 10
Tries scored 28 (2.8 per match)
Top point scorer(s) France Jean-Pierre Romeu (26)
Top try scorer(s) Scotland Billy Steele (3)
1972 (Previous) (Next) 1974

The 1973 Five Nations Championship was the forty-fourth series of the rugby union Five Nations Championship. Including the previous incarnations as the Home Nations and Five Nations, this was the seventy-ninth series of the northern hemisphere rugby union championship. Ten matches were played between 13 January and 14 April. It was contested by England, France, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

As each nation won their two home matches (and therefore lost their two away matches), the championship was shared between all five teams; no further tie-break was applied to separate teams finishing level on match points. This was the only time that the Five Nations championship finished in a five-way tie.

Due to the Troubles occurring in Ireland, which had resulted in the loss of over 100 British soldiers in 1972 and the potential security risks, both Scotland and Wales had refused to play Ireland in Dublin in 1972. Defying expectations to the contrary, England agreed to travel in 1973. Despite a poor performance, resulting in an 18-9 loss, the crowd in the Landsdowne Road stadium gave a standing ovation to the England team. England captain John Pullin delivered a quip at a post-match dinner - "Well we might not be any good but at least we turned up" - to great applause.[1]


The teams involved were:

Nation Venue City Head coach
 England Twickenham London John Elders
 France Parc des Princes Paris Jean Desclaux
 Ireland Lansdowne Road Dublin Syd Millar
 Scotland Murrayfield Edinburgh Bill Dickinson
 Wales National Stadium Cardiff Clive Rowlands


Position Nation Games Points Table
Played Won Drawn Lost For Against Difference
1  Wales 4 2 0 2 53 43 +10 4
1  Ireland 4 2 0 2 50 48 +2 4
1  France 4 2 0 2 38 36 +2 4
1  Scotland 4 2 0 2 55 59 −4 4
1  England 4 2 0 2 52 62 −10 4



France  16–13  Scotland
Tries: Dourthe
Pen.: Romeu (3)
Drops: Romeu
Tries: Lawson
Pen.: Brown (2)
Drops: McGeechan
Parc des Princes, Paris
Attendance: 37,232
Referee: K. Pattinson (England)
F. Palmade (France)

Wales  25–9  England
Tries: Bevan (2)
Con.: Bennett
Pen.: Taylor
Pen.: Doble (2)
Drops: Cowman
National Stadium, Cardiff
Referee: G. Domercq (France)

Scotland  10–9  Wales
Tries: Steele
Con.: Morgan
Pen.: Bennett (2)
Murrayfield, Edinburgh
Referee: F. Palmade (France)

Ireland  18–9  England
Tries: Grace
Con.: McGann (2)
Pen.: McGann
Drops: McGann
Tries: Neary
Con.: Jorden
Pen.: Jorden
Lansdowne Road, Dublin
Attendance: 50,000
Referee: A. M. Hosie (Scotland)

Scotland  19–14  Ireland
Tries: Forsyth
Pen.: Morgan (2)
Drops: McGeechan
Morgan (2)
Tries: Kiernan
Pen.: McGann (2)
Murrayfield, Edinburgh
Referee: A. R. Lewis (Wales)
England  14–6  France
Tries: Duckham (2)
Pen.: Jorden (2)
Tries: Bertranne
Con.: Romeu
Twickenham, London
Attendance: 70,000
Referee: K. H. Clark (Ireland)

Wales  16–12  Ireland
Tries: Edwards
Con.: Bennett
Pen.: Bennett (2)
Tries: Gibson
Con.: McGann
Pen.: McGann (2)
National Stadium, Cardiff
Referee: T. F. E. Grierson (Scotland)

England  20–13  Scotland
Tries: Dixon (2)
Con.: Jorden (2)
Tries: Steele (2)
Con.: Irvine
Pen.: Morgan
Twickenham, London
Referee: J. C. Kelleher (Wales)

France  12–3  Wales
Pen.: Romeu (3)
Drops: Romeu
Drops: Bennett
Parc des Princes, Paris
Attendance: 50,000
Referee: D. P. d'Arcy (Ireland)

Ireland  6–4  France
Pen.: Ensor
Tries: Phliponeau
Lansdowne Road, Dublin
Attendance: 50,000
Referee: R. F. Johnson (England)


  1. ^ "Memory of England Rugby's Travel to Dublin in Troubles". The Telegraph. 8 February 2013. Retrieved 20 August 2015. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
1972 Five Nations
Five Nations Championship
Succeeded by
1974 Five Nations