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RugbyU: England's Grand Slam flops

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(GlobalPost/GlobalPost)

England's record-breaking 30-3 loss to Wales at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium on Saturday was the fifth time in their last six attempts they'd fallen at the final hurdle of a bid to complete a Grand Slam in either the Five or Six Nations.

England's tally of 12 slams is a tournament record and one more than Wales, who've now tied the Anglo-Welsh record at 56 wins apiece with 12 draws.

This record margin of defeat by Wales, surpassing the 25-0 reverse they suffered in Cardiff way back in 1905, prolonged England's decade-long wait for a first Grand Slam since they lifted the World Cup in 2003 .

Below AFP Sport looks back at those recent Slam heart-breakers for England.

1999: Wembley: Wales 32 England 31

Wales have previous when it comes to wrecking England's Grand Slam dreams although this match, a 'home' game for the Welsh, took place at London's Wembley Stadium as the Millennium Stadium was in the process of being built on the site of the old National Stadium in Cardiff.

A match dominated by the boots of England's Jonny Wilkinson and Wales's Neil Jenkins saw England leading 31-25 with four minutes left.

But, rather than allow Wilkinson to take another shot at the posts that could have put his side an unbeatable two scores ahead, England captain Lawrence Dallaglio instead opted for a kick to the corner.

However, Wales won possession and from the last play of the game saw centre Scott Gibbs joyously dance his way over the line for a dramatic try.

Jenkins still needed to kick the conversion to win the match but the fly-half held his nerve and England's defeat saw Scotland crowned champions of the final Five Nations.

2000: Murrayfield: Scotland 19 England 13

England travelled north to Edinburgh in confident mood to face a Scotland side on the brink of a tournament whitewash after a run of four straight defeats.

However, inspired Scotland fly-half Duncan Hodge had arguably the match of his life at a rain-drenched Murrayfield in scoring all of the hosts' points, courtesy of four penalties, a try and a conversion.

2001: Dublin: Ireland 20 England 14

For the third season in a row England were denied a Grand Slam, Ireland completing the Celtic hat-trick of spoiling wins.

This match was delayed until October after the foot and mouth livestock crisis in Britain led to travel restrictions which postponed three Ireland matches.

England were caught cold when Ireland hooker Keith Wood threw into a lineout and raced round, taking a return pass, before diving over for a well-worked try.

Although England rallied, it was all too little too late.

2011: Dublin: Ireland 24 England 8

Martin Johnson was England's captain when they overwhelmed Ireland 42-6 in Dublin to win the 2003 Grand Slam. But he saw the tables turned in his role as England manager.

Sound goal-kicking by Jonathan Sexton and a try by wing Tommy Bowe saw Ireland into a 17-3 interval lead.

And the result was put beyond doubt early in the second half when Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll went over for a fine try.

England took the Six Nations title but that was little consolation.

2013: Cardiff: Wales 30 England 3

So commanding was this Welsh win -- their record margin of victory over England -- they not only denied them a Slam they also prevented them winning the Championship, with Wales retaining the title instead.

Wales, dominant at the scrum, led 12-3 early in the second half before two tries from wing Alex Cuthbert ended England's resistance.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130316/rugbyu-englands-grand-slam-flops