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Six Nations: Why fans love Europe's rugby showpiece

Published 0952 GMT (1752 HKT) March 8, 2019
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There is something about the Six Nations Championship that brings out both the best and the peculiar in European rugby fandom. From leprechauns to nuns, gladiators to chickens, it is a beer-fueled festival that has it all. VINCENZO PINTO/AFP/Getty Images
By way of example, these two Welshmen have dragons on their heads... Michael Steele/Getty Images
This English couple -- faces painted, rose-clad and covered in chain mail -- have arrived on inflatable horseback, presumably in cartoon homage to Saint George. GEOFF CADDICK/AFP/Getty Images
Ah yes, the daffodil -- a symbol of Wales like few else. Daffodils everywhere -- back, arms, legs, backside. Note the baffled smirks of the passers-by. Dan Mullan/Getty Images
Chain mail, jesters' hats and the longest of long lenses. How the papparazi have changed... GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images
Ooh la la. This shouldn't be suave, but look of those eyes... Warren Little/Getty Images
If ever there was an outfit that contrasted a team's form, this optimistic Italian's gladiatorial splendor doesn't quite match Italy's recent Six Nations record. Sergio Parisse and co. are without a win since 2015. Michael Steele/Getty Images
Just look at that face paint! That Saltire is perfection -- the facial hair even adds to it. ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP/Getty Images
There is all sorts going on here. Why the mini-flags? And the glasses? Who does that? Dan Mullan/Getty Images
On this monsieur's visage, you will find what is known as a Gallic rooster. Warren Little/Getty Images
What are lungs for, if not for bagpipes? Stu Forster/Getty Images
Nope, me neither. Michael Steele/Getty Images
It wouldn't be Six Nations rugby without a "nun" at the Stadio Olimpico. There are almost too many elements here to analyze. The rope, the cross, the man -- ticket semi-digested, beer clutched -- his startled face etched with a confused angst. Did he forget to lock the front door? ANDREAS SOLARO/AFP/Getty Images
This could almost be a game of "Where's Waldo?" -- a sole pink shirt among a sea of Irish green. Paolo Bruno/Getty Images
Look at those eyes fixed on that outstretched pint. The wide-brim hat is a lovely touch. VINCENZO PINTO/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
A touch of class and sophistication amid the posse of dragons, roses and roosters. Julian Finney/Getty Images
An image of so many layers. If you can look past the daffodil head frames and the half-and-half scarves, there's actually a man coming up behind on the shoulders of a toy child. What a tournament. Michael Steele/Getty Images