Published: Sun, February 25, 2018
Sports | By Phillip Butler

Superb Scotland stun England in 6 Nations

Superb Scotland stun England in 6 Nations

England, bidding for a second Grand Slam in three years were overwhelmed by a sea of blue at the breakdown and the exuberance of Scotland's Huw Jones.

FINN RUSSELL DELIVERED a decisive and redemptive performance as Scotland stunned a sloppy England 25-13 at Murrayfield to end Grand Slam hopes for Eddie Jones' side. It was as near as they could get to exactly 100 years from the first global rugby match anywhere in the world - which was between England and Scotland.

Scotland were unchanged from the side that beat France 32-26 last time out, with the mercurial Russell retained in the starting XV by coach Gregor Townsend.

Simon Shaw says England are "not the polished article" as they prepare to do battle with fierce rivals Scotland in the Six Nations.

The Six Nations holders are on course to become the first team to win the tournament outright three years in a row after beating Italy and Wales in their first two matches.

"It's human nature, unfortunately we just weren't in the game for the first 40 minutes".

Buoyed by a vociferous Murrayfield crowd, the hosts consistently stretched the visitors' defence and Jones collected a deft Russell grubber kick to dive over next to the posts to score Scotland's first home try against England since 2004.

Asked if that had had any bearing on the match, Eddie Jones said: "I don't know, I don't think so, these things happen".

With Ireland earlier securing a bonus point win against Wales, their five-point lead over England in the standings puts them in a strong position to reclaim the title they last won in 2015.

They kicked away possession and Scotland were in dreamland by the break.

His long pass from just outside the 22 released Jones who sprinted clear before being tackled by wing Jonny May.

In a very open game, Scotland narrowly avoided throwing an intercept and Sean Maitland managed to get in in the left corner but Laidlaw sent the resulting conversion wide.

Farrell cut the deficit to nine points early in the second half with a try the inside centre duly converted.

Laidlaw converted and Farrell replied with a penalty but in attack, England looked lifeless.

England came out for the second half 22-6 down - their largest halftime deficit in 136 meetings against Scotland - and scored their only try nearly immediately through second five-eighth Owen Farrell.

England had another "try" disallowed when Farrell was denied after replays showed flanker Courtney Lawes had knocked on when tackling Russell.

The visitors' chances of victory all but ended when replacement Sam Underhill was sin-binned for a no-arms tackle in the 66th, when the score was 22-13.

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