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6 Nations Championship

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Ronan O'Gara holds the 6 Nations Championship Trophy after leading Ireland to the Grand Slam in 2009

The 6 Nations is an annual Rugby Union Championship contested between the top international sides in Europe. Outside of the Rugby Union World Cup, the 6 Nations Championship is the most eagerly awaited and hotly contested Rugby Union competition in the Northern hemisphere with rivalries dating back over 100 years.

As its names suggests, 6 countries do battle, playing each other once and receiving two points for a victory and one for a drawn game. The participating nations are England, France, Italy, Ireland, Scotland and Wales and the 6 Nations Championship goes to the team with the most points at the end of the series of games. Since the teams play each other just once, home advantage alternates from one year to the next.

The 6 Nations Championship evolved from the Home International Championship which was established in 1883 and was formed between England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. France played in four competitions before the championship was officially renamed as the Five Nations in 1910 and it wasn’t until 2000 that Italy joined and the competition took its current name, the 6 Nations Championship.

Within the 6 Nations umbrella, there are several individual competitions that have continued to be contested over the years and have become popular betting markets for Rugby Union and sports fans. The oldest competition is the Calcutta Cup, which is awarded to the winners of the England and Scotland game, this trophy pre-dates the original Home International Championship as the two nations were competing against each other from 1871 and hostilities between these old Rugby Union rivals continue un-abated to this day.

In the days of the Home Internationals, the Triple Crown was an honour bestowed upon any team that managed to beat all three rivals and like the Calcutta Cup this ‘side’ competition is still proudly contested between the nations involved. Since the formation of the Five Nations, victory over all competing nations has been known as the Grand Slam and this has continued with the 6 Nations Championship.

The Millennium Trophy has been awarded to the winners of England and Ireland games since 1988 and more recently, France and Italy have been contesting the Guiseppe Garibaldi trophy since 2007 to honour the 200th anniversary of the French military general who helped to unify Italy.

Free Rugby Union Bets for the 6 Nations Championship

Rugby Union fans can qualify for free bets on the 6 Nations Championship when registering an account with many of the online bookmakers competing for new customers on the internet. The 6 Nations Championship has a huge TV audience in addition to sell out attendances and betting interest on the competition is also very big, as evidenced by the number and variety of betting markets advertised by bookmakers.

Interest in the 6 Nations Championships will spur many Rugby Union fans to add to the excitement of watching their favourite teams and players by having a bet on the outcome of the competition or the some of the individual games. Online bookmakers will allow free bet awards to be placed on any of the betting markets on the 6 Nations Championship. Throughout the competition, bookmakers will be offering odds on the 6 Nations Champions, Grand Slam winner, Triple Crown winner, individual match odds, handicap odds, winning points margin and first tryscorer. These are traditionally the most popular 6 Nations Championship betting markets and internet bettors can place their free Rugby Union bets on any of these markets, as well as a number of other betting markets.

Many online bookmakers are promoting the new applications they have developed for smartphones to allow customers to bet and keep up to date with their account while at the game or when out and about. To encourage customers to try out the apps, some online bookmakers have been offering a free bet to place from the account holder’s smartphone.

Betting tips for your 6 Nations Free Bets

With so many 6 Nations Championship matches and hundreds of betting markets available, many Rugby Union fans place quite a few bets during the competition which runs for about six weeks in February and March each year. It makes sense for many of those internet bettors to have accounts with more than one online bookmaker.

The free bets alone massively improve the chances of making a profit from betting on the 6 Nations Championship and once the free 6 Nations bets have been invested it makes sense to shop around for the best odds for those bets that will be paid for.

There are a number of different free bets offers available and new customers should consider which free bet offers are most appropriate:
• Risk Free bets, where the bookmaker will refund your stake if your first bet loses, typically worth £5 - £30 in free bets
• Match bets, where the bookmaker will award a free bet to the same value as your first bet stake, typically worth £10 - £50 free bets
• Deposit Bonus, the bookmaker will credit new accounts with a percentage of the initial deposit, typically worth £50 - £200 free bets.
There will be conditions applied, such as the odds for qualifying bets, which are typically 1/5 (1.2) to evens (2.0). Some free bet offers have rollover requirements, the bigger free bet offers will entail the deposit and/or free bets to be invested a number of times before being withdrawn from the account.
Get more information about the restrictions and terms of free bet offers from the FREE BETS section at best free bets.

The introductory free bets offered by online bookmakers are available to new customers wishing to bet on any sport, but with the huge interest in the 6 Nations Championships, the more competitive online bookmakers will be offering other ways for Rugby Union fans to get themselves additional free bets.

Look out for special bookmaker bonuses and offers on the 6 Nations Championship which can boost your winnings or offer some ‘insurance’ against picking a losing selection by giving free bet refunds and consolations. The First Try Scorer is a popular betting market and online bookmaker Betfred has made a name for himself offering bonuses and cashback specials for this kind of event.

You can subscribe to our Newsletter from this page and keep up to date with all the latest free bet offers on the 6 Nations Championship and other major sporting events including the latest introductory offers from newly added bookmakers.

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