Defending Six Nations champions Ireland are most likely to retain their crown on points difference from England according to a complex mathematical formula used by experts involved in predicting catastrophes.
QBE Business Insurance today released its findings and predicts that Schmidt’s Ireland and Eddie Jones’ England will both finish top of the table with just one defeat each, with the Boys in Green expected to fall to a four-point defeat in Twickenham, while Dylan Hartley’s side are to come a cropper on the final day in an agonising one-point defeat to France.
The QBE Rugby Predictor, which has an 83pc success rate and correctly predicted the outcome of 38 out of the 47 games during the Rugby World Cup, has produced results for all five rounds and expects Ireland to emerge victorious courtesy of a superior points differential.
Below is the formula used:



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The computer model, which has simulated the tournament 10,000 times to produce outcomes from 150,000 games, indicates that Ireland has a 35pc chance of winning this year’s tournament, with an 11pc chance of a third-ever Grand Slam.
England are the second favourite to win (30pc), France the third favourite (17pc), Wales fourth (14pc), Scotland the fifth favourite (4pc) and Italy the least likely to win (0pc).
Predicted scores for 2016 Six Nations

Round One
France 33        Italy 12
Scotland 13     England 21
Ireland 32        Wales 21
Round Two
France 20        Ireland 22
Wales 26         Scotland 21
Italy 13            England 30
Round Three
Wales 23         France 19
Italy 15            Scotland 30
England 25      Ireland 21
Round Four
Ireland 44        Italy 11
England 26      Wales 20
Scotland 14     France 20
Round Five
Wales 39         Italy 12
Ireland 30        Scotland 19
France 18        England 17
Below were some of the predictions form the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
Match                                     QBE Predicted          Outcome                  
South Africa v Wales              23-20                           23-19                         
Scotland v USA                      37-12                           39-6                           
Ireland v Romania                  40-8                             44-
France v Italy                         33-14                           32-10