There is an arc in the competitive relationship between most fathers and sons.
Stage one: father teaches son. Stage two: father lets son win. Stage three: equally matched. Stage four: son unrepentantly triumphant. Stage five: son patronises father by throwing him occasional bones.
Andy and Owen Farrell are not most fathers and sons. Which is why, when they come up against each other at the elite level once again this weekend, the dynamic between them will be so perplexing to the majority of those watching.
England v Ireland is always a huge game. With Ireland two games unbeaten and England on the rebound from World Cup final disappointment there is extra weight on this one, but you can find subplots anywhere you care: Farrell senior returning to Twickenham as head coach for the first time; Eddie Jones with a new-look coaching staff containing only a solitary Englishman; both looking to move their teams on as a new World Cup cycle begins.
But it is the Farrell against Farrell narrative that will draw the eye, because each is so integral to everything their side is, and because their characters are reflected in the style and attitude of the teams around them.
— Read on www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/51560161
Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me