Lots of English fans left disappointed on Saturday night

Ireland's Paul O'Connell lifted the trophy in the end
Ireland's Paul O'Connell lifted the trophy in the end

The Irish nation may have erupted in celebration as our heroes in green retained their 6 Nations rugby crown - but there were a lot of disappointed English fans crying into their beer on Saturday night.

The BBC has announced record-breaking viewing figures for Saturday's gripping RBS 6 Nations finale between England and France at Twickenham, with a peak audience of 9.63 million tuned into the action as England won 55-35, but came up just short in their attempt to overhaul Ireland after their earlier win against Scotland.

The BBC said that figure passed the previous best of 9.56m for England against France four years ago.

The other games on so-called Super Saturday attracted peak audiences of 5.1m for Scotland against Ireland at Murrayfield and 4.1m as Wales beat Italy in Rome.

The BBC Sport website, meanwhile, recorded 8.22m unique UK browsers on Saturday, surpassing a previous-best figure of 8.03m during the 2012 London Olympics.

BBC Sport director Barbara Slater said: "What an amazing end to such a thrilling Six Nations Championship, and duly reflected in such a huge audience figure of 9.63m on BBC One, with millions more accessing content through radio, online and digital platforms."