The organisers of the Six Nations Championship have announced that there will be a bonus point system introduced for the 2017 Six Nations, and then evaluated after the tournament.

The scoring system for the last few years has been simple:

  • 0 championship points for a loss
  • 1 championship point for a draw
  • 2 championship points for a win

In 2017 scoring will be as follows:

  • 0 championship points for a loss
  • 2 championship points for a draw
  • 4 championship points for a win
  • 1 championship point for scoring 4 tries
  • 1 championship point for losing by less than seven points
  • A team winning a Grand Slam by beating all other teams will get an additional 3 championship points

So a team that wins while scoring 4 tries will get 5 points.

A team that loses but scores 4 tries and finishes within 7 points of the winner will get 2 points

A team that draws but scores 4 tries or more will get 3 points.

The aim of the of the bonus point system is to encourage try scoring and make games more exciting.  A winning or losing team with 3 tries is likely to keep pushing at the end of the game to gain that bonus point.  A team losing by 10 points with 2 minutes to go will keep pushing to bring that deficit down to 7 points and secure the losing bonus point.

Grand Slam

The additional 3 championship point for a Grand Slam are to ensure you never get a situation where one team wins the Grand Slam but loses the Six Nations Championship.

The most championship points a team can get without winning the grand slam is 22.  That’s 4 bonus point wins at 5 points each, plus one loss that gains them 2 losing bonus points.

The lowest points total a team can get for winning all 5 matches is 20 (5 x 4-point wins).  So the extra 3 Grand Slam points are required to ensure the Grand Slam winners will always finish above the second placed side.

Drama and excitement

John Feehan, chief executive of Six Nations said: “The drama and excitement of the last weekend of the Six Nations championship is unique and is, more often than not, driven by a number of teams on equal championship points all competing for first place on the table.

“It is important for us to ensure that any bonus point system which is implemented would not, in any way, take away from this unique dynamic.

“At the same time, we are also conscious that we must reward try scoring and an attacking style of play that will deliver more tries and greater rewards for fans and players alike.”

The Blindside firmly believes that this system can make the games in this great tournament even more exciting and certainly not make them less so.  It clearly works in the Aviva Premiership and there’s no reason to think it won’t work in the Six Nations.

Reward teams for attacking play and you will see more attacking play.