Johnny Sexton arguably supplied the stand-out moment of the 2018 NatWest 6 Nations in the opening round of this year’s Championship.
Without his monster drop goal in overtime against France in Paris, Ireland’s Grand Slam ambitions would have fallen at the first hurdle.
Vote for the 2018 NatWest 6 Nations Player of the Championship Joe Schmidt’s side were staring defeat in the face after Teddy Thomas touched down for a brilliant individual score to put France in front late on. However, Sexton showed his class as he orchestrated a stunning 41-phase move down the field before kicking the last-gasp effort from 45 metres out for a 15-13 win. The fly-half suffered a gluteal muscle injury in the 37-27 win over Wales in round three, which hampered his kicking at goal for the remainder of the Championship. But, nevertheless, his grit and determination saw him play on regardless and drive Ireland to only their third Grand Slam triumph. The victory against England ensured Sexton finally achieved the feat he feared had passed him by when Ireland slipped up against Wales in their 2015 Championship win. As well as his match-winning contribution against France, Sexton was also awarded man of the match against Scotland as he reinforced his place as a world-class ten.