Heaslip keeps the faith
Ireland number eight still thinks France can be toppled
Last Updated: 14/03/10 7:46pm
Heaslip: Still believes
Jamie Heaslip is adamant that Ireland still have a chance to retain their RBS Six Nations crown as the tournament enters its final round of matches.
"We're still playing for the championship next Saturday - big time."
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The defending Grand Slam champions are two points behind France with a vastly inferior points difference after a 27-12 victory over Wales on Saturday.
Ireland can claim the Triple Crown if they beat Scotland at Croke Park, but they will need to win by a huge margin and still hope that England upset the odds in Paris to have any chance of the overall Six Nations title.
But even though the scenario is unlikely, Heaslip says that his side have not given up yet.
"We're still playing for the championship next Saturday - big time. The Triple Crown would be great as well," he said.
"We're going out to win and hopefully there's some silverware at the end of it because you never know what you're going to get with France.
"Whichever team wants it more between them and England will win. If England turn up they can the win because France are a very beatable side.
"They're good and they'll punish you if you let them, but if you match them physically and shut down some of their strike runners you can cause them many problems."
The Leinster forward also said that he was delighted to finally secure a Croke Park victory over Wales, who they had not yet defeated at their adopted home.
"Wales may be disappointed with some of their finishing. As a team we made more inroads into their half," said Heaslip.
"Wales played a pretty expansive game and tried to stretch us. They made a couple of breaks but we did well to slow down their ball.
"It didn't really feel like they threatened our line at all. They didn't show much to cause us problems.
"They're still a good side but we were the better team and they can't have any arguments about that.
"Two years ago was my first Six Nations tournament and losing to Wales that day was a bitter pill to swallow.
"We didn't want to send Croke Park off having not beaten them and we got the job done three tries to none."