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'A fired up England with a point to prove are always a dangerous team'

By Josh Raisey
Scotland/ PA

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England head to Edinburgh this weekend for the Calcutta Cup with a point to prove, almost a year to the day after Scotland earned their first win against the ‘Auld Enemy’ at Twickenham since 1983.

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Eddie Jones’ side have had their share of disruptions in the build up to the Guinness Six Nations, from positive Covid-19 tests and injuries to hotel fires and night time evacuations. Then again, Scotland have had their injury woes too, losing loosehead Jamie Bhatti this week.

When, where and how to watch the match
The match will kick-off at 16:45 (UK) on Saturday February 5th at BT Murrayfield Stadium and will be broadcast live on BBC in the UK, Virgin Media in Ireland, Stan Sport in Australia and SuperSport in South Africa.

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Head-to-head
England boast a healthy record of 76 wins to Scotland’s 44 since their first match in 1871, with 19 draws along the way. However, Scotland have proven to Jones’ nemesis since his first game in charge of England in 2016, which was a win against Scotland. The Australian only has a 50 percent win rate in Calcutta Cup matches, which is his joint worst record for England, tied with his record against the All Blacks.

Match odds from bet365
bet365 expect a close game and have the handicap on England at +2, with 5/1 odds that Scotland win with a margin of 1-5 points. There are also 28/1 odds that no tries are scored in the match.

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Prediction

Former England No.8 Lawrence Dallaglio raised some concerns about the experience in the England squad on BT Sport’s Rugby Tonight this week, but he believes England will go up to Edinburgh with a point to prove.

“There’s not a lot of experience there,” the former England captain said. “Could [Sam] Simmonds and [Alex] Dombrandt have 20 more caps each? I believe they could. Should they be further down the experience route?

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“It’s going to be a big challenge for this England team. They go up there with a wonderful fly-half but hasn’t played a huge amount at international level. It doesn’t seem to faze him but we’ll soon find out. So some big question marks for Eddie Jones to answer.

“But a fired up England with a point to prove are always a dangerous team and they’ve lost three out of the last four Calcutta Cup and I think we need to remind ourselves about that. You’re in an England dressing room, you need to redress the balance and go up there and make a statement. That’s going to be tough, because Scotland are in good shape, they’ll fancy their chances.”

*Odds accurate as of 02/02/22.

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