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Saturday 19 August 2017

English bench to press home the advantage for Jones

England coach Eddie Jones. Photo credit: Adam Davy/PA Wire
England coach Eddie Jones. Photo credit: Adam Davy/PA Wire

It is a long time since The Calcutta Cup match held so much significance for England and Scotland.

Coach Eddie Jones will not tolerate the same complacency that exposed Dylan Hartley's lack of knowledge of the rule book against Italy's innovative tactics last time out.

The suspicion is that they will finally put on the performance that is undoubtedly within them.

Their back-five forwards should have the muscle to make the metres necessary for Ben Youngs, George Ford and Owen Farrell to exploit holes in Vern Cotter's defence.

Scotland can throw caution to the wind around Twickenham.

In fact, they will have to just to avoid the arm wrestle the large English pack would surely embrace.

Their flankers Jon Barclay and Hamish Watson will look to frustrate England's upright back-row on the floor.

Half-backs Ali Price and Finn Russell will be charged with feeding the wide channels where Stuart Hogg, Tommy Seymour and Tim Visser can puncture the best defences. The greatest strength England can call on is from their bench where every one of their eight men have been or will be challenging for the first team.

The combined impact of the likes of Billy and Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Kyle Sinckler, Ben Te'o and Anthony Watson screams strength in depth.

It is this cast of extras that should enable England to pull away in the final quarter.

ENGLAND: S Brown; J Nowell, J Joseph, O Farrell, E Daly; G Ford, B Youngs; J Marler, D Hartley (capt), D Cole, J Launchbury, C Lawes, M Itoje, J Haskell, N Hughes.

SCOTLAND: S Hogg; T Seymour, M Jones, A Dunbar, T Visser; F Russell, A Price; G Reid, F Brown, Z Fagerson, R Gray, J Gray, J Barclay (capt), H Watson, R Wilson.

Verdict: England.

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