The 2017 Six Nations Championship, known as the 2017 RBS 6 Nations because of the tournament’s sponsorship by The Royal Bank of Scotland, will be the 18th series of the Six Nations Championship, the annual northern hemisphere rugby union championship.
Played annually, the format of the Championship is simple: each team plays every other team once, with home field advantage alternating from one year to the next. Two points are awarded for a win, one for a draw and none for a loss and unlike most other rugby union competitions the bonus point system is not used.
Victory in every game results in a ‘Grand Slam’ and back-to-back Grand Slams have been won on five occasions. Wales achieved the first one in 1908 and 1909, England have done it three times in 1913 and 1914, 1923 and 1924 and 1991 and 1992 while France did it in 1997 and 1998. England hold the record for the number of Grand Slams won with 12, followed by Wales with 11, France with nine, Scotland with three and Ireland with two.
Victory by any Home Nation over the other three Home Nations constitutes as a ‘Triple Crown’. The Triple Crown has twice been won on four consecutive occasions, once by Wales between 1976 and 1979 and once by England between 1995 and 1998. England hold the record for the number of Triple Crowns won with 23, followed by Wales with 20 and Scotland and Ireland both with ten.
Although this achievement has long been a feature of the tournament, it was not until 2006 that a physical trophy, commissioned by the Royal Bank of Scotland, was awarded. Meanwhile, the last-placed nation at the end of the tournament is said to have won a purely figurative Wooden Spoon.
Several individual competitions take place under the umbrella of the Six Nations tournament. The oldest is the Calcutta Cup, which has been running since 1879 and is contested annually between England and Scotland.
The Millennium Trophy has been awarded to the winner of the game between England and Ireland with the first presented in 1989, and in the same year, the Centenary Quaich was contested between Ireland and Scotland for the first time.
Since 2007, France and Italy have also contested for their own silverware – the Giuseppe Garibaldi Trophy. It was created to honour the 200th anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Garibaldi, who helped unify Italy and was also a French military general.
Read more at http://www.rbs6nations.com