SIX NATIONS RUGBY: Ireland lose thirlling encounter with Scotland

Ireland's Iain Henderson celebrates scoring
Ireland's Iain Henderson celebrates scoring

Ireland suffered a surprise opening Six Nations Championship 27-22 defeat to Scotland at Murrayfield on Saturday.

In what was a thrilling encounter with the Scots racing into a 21-5 lead within 30 minutes.

Ireland's Paddy Jackson scores  despite Josh Strauss of Scotland

Ireland's Paddy Jackson scores despite Josh Strauss of Scotland

Ireland were well off the mark in the opening quarter and Scottish fullback Stuart Hogg crossed for two tries, both converted by Greig Laidlaw to give the hosts a 14-0 lead after 20 minutes.

The Irish scored a great try, finished by Keith Earls after 25 minutes to open their account.

But the Scots shocked the Irish when, from a lineout, centre Alex Dunbar took the ball and went over unopposed with the visiting defence caught cold. Laidlaw converted for a 21-5 lead.

Jackson kicked a penalty seven minutes from the end of the first half and Ireland finished strongly going in 13 points arrears at the interval.

Ireland's Keith Earls scores

Ireland's Keith Earls scores

It was perhaps no suprise that Ireland came out firing for the second half and seven minutes in lock Iain Henderson drove in from close range for a try, Jackson converting.

Well in command now, Ireland had their tails up but the Scottish defence held firm.

That was until the 62nd minute when outhalf Jackson scrambled his way over for a try and his converstion put the Irish in front for the first time at 22-21 and set up a thrilling final quarter.

Against the run of play, Scotland fought their way into Ireland territory and a penalty opportunity gave Laidlaw the simple opportunity to kick his head into a two point lead.

Scotland's Stuart Hogg scores his second try

Scotland's Stuart Hogg scores his second try

Scotland played smart rugby to the end, putting a kickable penalty into touch, holding possession and when another penalty came their way in the final minute of the game, Laidlaw went for posts, slotted it through and the victory was secured.