We’re now just two days away from the start of the 2020 Guinness Six Nations, which means time is running out for you to sign up to the official Fantasy Rugby game.
With points on offer right from the first whistle, don’t miss the chance to lead your team to victory, with every metre gained, every tackle made and every try scored all proving vital.
With a maximum of four players allowed from each nation, and restrictions on the number of players allowed in each position, it’s imperative you make the best choices to optimise the number of points you score.
Here are our tips for Round 1
Ireland vs Scotland
Ireland will be looking to start their 2020 Guinness Six Nations campaign by putting down a marker against Scotland on Saturday, so it could be worth going all out on the big hitters in this one.
Johnny Sexton is the joint-most expensive player in the game at 17.0 stars, but with penalties and conversions earning you three points a time, the Leinster man could really rack up a big score if the home side start to purr.
Another man who will be a popular choice will be Jacob Stockdale. Once again, an expensive purchase at 16.0 stars, but if he produces some 2018-style vintage performances he will be worth every penny.
He came away from the Championship with seven tries to his name two years ago, and with points awarded for defenders beaten and metres gained, he looks to be a shoe-in for many a side this weekend.
If you’re looking for a bargain buy, you might be better off looking at the other flank at the Aviva Stadium. With Munster wing Andrew Conway costing just 9.0 stars, he’s a cheaper alternative to Stockdale, and with Ireland unbeaten at home against Scotland since 2010, could earn you 12 points for a home victory to boot.
Andy Farrell’s decision to opt for Connor Murray over John Cooney at scrum-half was always going to be a contentious decision but it could play perfectly into your hands this weekend, with the option of a ‘supersub’ available.
With your ‘supersub’ earning triple points when he comes onto the field, the Ulster man isn’t a bad option to have off the bench.
With four tries in the Guinness PRO14 this season, and currently the overall top scorer in the competition, the 29-year-old will certainly be looking to make an impact when he comes onto the pitch, and you could reap the rewards.
From a Scottish point of view, they may be forced to rely on the kicking of Adam Hastings to keep them in touch in Dublin, and at 11.0 stars, the Glasgow Warrior is reasonably priced too.
With one point gained for each tackle made, and two for those deemed a dominant tackle, it might be within your interests to opt for some of the big boys of the Scottish pack.
Looking at the numbers, Jonny Gray was among the leaders in tackles made in the 2019 Championship, and could earn points on the other side of the ball this weekend.
At 10.0 stars, Ali Price could well be worth a punt, with the 26-year-old preferred to George Horne at scrum-half this weekend. Stuart Hogg is a man we all know is capable of producing the spectacular at times, but at 17.0 stars, it’s hard to justify the price tag.
Wales vs Italy
This is where we could get some big scorers this weekend, with Wales known to score heavily when the Italians come to town, and with a packed Principality Stadium roaring them on, Wayne Pivac’s side could help you rise up the leaderboard.
At 15.0 stars, Dan Biggar is one of the cheaper fly-halves in the game, and the Northampton Saint could be very good value for that price this weekend, with plenty of kicking opportunities expected.
George North (15.0 stars) has scored at least two tries in each of the last six Championships, and it would take a brave man to bet against that happening again this year. He may be playing at centre in a new looking Wales team this weekend, but it would be no surprise to see the 27-year-old add to his tally of 19 Guinness Six Nations tries.
Another ‘supersub’ option comes in the form of the returning Rhys Webb, with the soon-to-be Ospreys scrum-half looking to make an impression back in the international set-up. He isn’t among the starters in Cardiff, but coming off the bench, he could be the perfect weapon against a tiring Italian defence later in the game.
With a new Azzurri coach in Franco Smith, Italy could have some gems among their ranks. Tommaso Allan will always notch a few points for the Azzurri, but at 14.0 stars, the decision is whether to dent your budget for him?
The cheaper purchases that could be decent back-up options would be Luca Morisi and Mattia Bellini. At just 9.0 stars apiece, they don’t cost a fortune but can also pop up with a try or two.
Or perhaps you look to Italy’s forwards – and their bullocking back row – where the explosive Jake Polledri and Bram Steyn (bboth 12.0 stars) reside.
France vs England
This is the game that could make or break many a fantasy team this weekend, with so many uncertainties heading into it.
It’s an old cliché with France that you never know which side is going to turn up but perhaps that is truer than ever this year, with a whole swathe of debutants making the squad and a new coach in Fabien Galthié.
It always seems like a risk picking the cream of the crop from Les Bleus, but Galthié has faith in his side, and there are a number of exciting young prospects to choose from.
Twenty-year-old Arthur Vincent (10.0 stars) and Romain Ntamack (14.0) could be the pick of the bunch ahead of Sunday’s clash, with the latter excelling at the 2019 World Cup in Japan.
Another cheap option would be Gabriel Ngandebe at 10.0 stars, the Montpellier wing is like lightning and could sneak his way past the English defence in Paris, and will gain priceless metres forward in doing so.
In comparison, England are much more of a known quantity. Whether it’s Owen Farrell for 17.0 stars, or Jonny May for 16.0, the household names will come at a premium, but with 18 points on offer for an away victory, they may be worth your while.
There is value to be had in Eddie Jones’ squad though, with 13.0 for George Furbank looking like a worthwhile investment.
The Northampton Saint is among the leaders in metres gained in the Gallagher Premiership this year, and if he plays like he has been domestically this season, he could be among the highest scorers after the first round of fixtures.
Another ‘supersub’ contender could be Saracens’ Ben Earl, who has a league-leading six tries this season. He’s definitely a man in form, and if he gets the chance, he is sure to punish the France defence, and bag you a cool 15 points for each score in the process.
If you’re still not sure who to select, check out the Guinness Six Nations Fantasy Rugby Podcast for the inside scoop on all the teams!