Mario Itoje's last-gasp try seals England win over France

England's Maro Itoje celebrates at the final whistle after the Guinness Six Nations match at Twicken

England's Maro Itoje celebrates at the final whistle after the Guinness Six Nations match at Twickenham Stadium, London. - Credit: PA

There was last-minute drama as a refereeing decision was reversed to award a Maro Itoje try, giving England a 23-20 Guinness Six Nations victory over France at Twickenham.

TMO reversed on-field referee Andrew Brace's original no try decision after it was proven the Saracens lock forward clearly placing the ball over the line in the 77th minute.

Scoring the winning try at Twickers is the stuff dreams are made of and for Camden-born ltoje it was a significant game changer that not only increased Les Blues losing run at RFU headquarters to 16 years, but also dented their Grand Slam ambitions.

That puts Wales, who comfortably brushed aside Italy 48-7, in the driving seat to complete the unique clean sweep if they win at Stade De France, Paris this Saturday evening. 

"If I'm going to be honest it wasn't the most exciting try," said 26-year-old Itoje.


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"It was a pick and go so, yes, I'm very happy that the team scored that try in the last few minutes, but I doubt it's one which is going to end up in any highlights reel or anything. But, nonetheless, a try is a try. They all cost the same."

England's Maro Itoje scores a try during the Guinness Six Nations match at Twickenham Stadium, Londo

England's Maro Itoje scores a try during the Guinness Six Nations match at Twickenham Stadium, London. Picture date: Saturday March 13, 2021. - Credit: PA

Sarries' England captain Owen Farrell kicked 13 points through the posts while fellow clubmates Elliot Daly, Jamie George, brothers Billy and Mako Vunipola and Bristol Bears loanees Max Malins and Ben Earl also featured in the game otherwise known annually in the Six Nations as "Le Crunch".

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While many will regard England's final Guinness Six Nations game with Ireland this Saturday at AVIVA Stadium, Dublin, after losses against Scotland and Wales, as a dead rubber, number 8 specialist Billy Vunipola believes a victory would give an opportunity to build once again.

"This potentially could be a springboard for us as a team," said the 28-year-old. "But I think there's still huge disappointment in the fact that we are going into next week without the title on the line. Saturday was a really really good step forward for us with the group of players.

"We’ve talked about wanting to be the greatest team in the world and this will give us confidence, knowing that we can mix it with the best teams out there and beat them.

“That really showed out. This definitely be a springboard moving forward, especially next week in Ireland, it's another game and another opportunity for us to play well."

Other Saracens players featuring in Six Nations action saw Sean Maitland ending up in the wrong end of Scotland's late defeat to Ireland 27-24 at Murrayfield, Edinburgh last Sunday

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