Italy and Scotland fought out a close match in Rome. It wasn’t great rugby, but the two sides were fairly evenly matched. Italy came out ahead by 16-12, primarily because they were able to score a try while Scotland, despite threatening a lot, didn’t manage to do so.
England were a lot better against Ireland than they were in Italy, but still failed to sparkle, or win. The match statistics tell a fascinating story. England dominated possession, especially in the second half when they had twice as much ball as the Irish. Ireland made 99 tackles during the game, and missed only one. England only made 30 tackles, but missed seven. The Irish wings scored three tries – two for Tommy Bowe and one for Keith Earls. England scored only one try, and that by a prop forward from close range. So yes, Ireland sat back and defended for most of the the game, but they did so very well, and when they did get a chance they were ruthless. And that’s why they ended up winners by 20-16.