No doubting Ireland's best moment after tough start against England got a whole lot better 11 months ago

No doubting Ireland's best moment after tough start against England got a whole lot better

Another record-breaking achievement for the Ireland fly half.

Ireland fly half Johnny Sexton broke old foe Ronan O'Gara's long-standing Six Nations point scoring record in the first half of Ireland's Grand Slam decider.

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Following what was an uncharacteristically slow start by Andy Farrell's Irish side, England took an unexpected 6-0 lead after Owen Farrell dispatched two penalties in the opening quarter of an hour.

The moment Sexton entered the record books. (Credit: Getty Images)

However, Sexton finally got Ireland on the score board at the end of the opening quarter, dutifully slotting his first penalty of the afternoon.

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In doing so, the 37-year-old moved past O'Gara's Six Nation's tally of 557 points, which Sexton had equalled in last weekend's victory over Scotland at Murrayfield.

A player synonymous with big occasions, Sexton has spearheaded what had initially been a lacklustre display for Farrell's Grand Slam chasing side, and confidently slotted his conversion attempt too following Dan Sheehan's 32nd minute try.

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Off the back of a line out on the English 22, Dan Sheehan collected a clever inside pass from World Player of the Year Josh Van der Flier.

The Irish hooker proceeded to outpace both Kyle Sinckler and Manu Tualagi, with the Leinster man crashing over for the opening try of the game and his third in an Irish jersey.

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A dramatic first half concluded with a potentially decisive moment in the Grand Slam battle, as England full back Freddie Steward received a straight red card for a shoulder to the head of Irish full back Hugo Keenan.

Steward protested his innocence to the referee, but Jaco Pyper told the England back that "in the current climate", it was a red card.

Both Andrew Trimble and Alan Quinlan were in agreement on commentary however, that the red card did in fact appear harsh on the full back, with the incident occurring at such speed.

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