Will the introduction of bonus points bring a smile to Joe Schmidt’s face?
A bonus points system will be introduced in the next RBS 6 Nations championship in 2017, the Six Nations Council has announced.
The Six Nations Council announced bonus points will be trialled in the Six Nations, women's Six Nations and Under-20 Six Nations tournaments, and then reviewed.
The Council said it had taken the decision "to encourage and reward try-scoring and attacking play."
Competition points will be awarded in all matches on the following basis:
- The Union that wins the Match shall be awarded four Match Points or (if it scores four tries or more in the process) five Match Points.
- The Union that loses the Match shall be awarded no Match Points or (if it scores four tries or more in the process or loses by a margin of seven points or fewer) one Match Point or (if it scores four tries or more in the process and loses by a margin of seven points or fewer) two Match Points.
- Unions that draw a Match shall each be awarded two Match Points and any of them that scores four tries or more in the process shall be awarded a further one Match Point.
- A Union that wins all five of its Matches (a "Grand Slam”) shall be awarded a further three Match Points.
The first game of this season's Six Nations is Scotland against Ireland on February 4.