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'Pure lunacy': Scotland fans have collective heart attack over Finn Russell's 'brain fart' that could have tipped the result in England's favour

By Sam Smith

Trending on RugbyPass

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Scotland’s famous 11-6 win over England at Twickenham for the first time in 38 years didn’t come without drama, as a late England possession gave the home side the chance to repeat the ending of 2019’s classic draw where they scored five minutes into injury time.


Flyhalf Finn Russell attempted a drop goal with less than sixty seconds left on the clock that ended up getting charged down, leaving his side scrambling to recover the loose ball.

Man-of-the-match Stuart Hogg was there to clean up what could have become a disastrous ending with the game all but secured. With the forwards holding possession tight to wind down the clock, a drop goal was called with Russell back in the pocket despite not holding an advantage or time being up.

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Under pressure, Russell moved to take the kick off his left foot leading to the charge down and a collective heart-in-mouth moment for all Scotland fans watching.

Commentator and former Irish international Alan Quinlan exclaimed ‘what in God’s name are they trying to do?!’ as Russell’s attempt was made. Fans described the scene as ‘utter madness’, ‘pure lunacy’, and a ‘total brain fart’ by Russell.



Russell’s moment summed up a mixed day for the re-called flyhalf, who had ups-and-downs throughout the match.

Five minutes from half time Russell was yellow carded for a foot trip on England scrumhalf Ben Youngs, allowing Owen Farrell to close the gap to 8-6 just before the half and reducing Scotland to 14-men.

RugbyPass columnist Gavin Harper afforded Russell the benefit of the doubt for his faux pas, awarding a generous 8 out of 10 rating.

“Some lovely touches in attack, including a cross-kick for van der Merwe,” he wrote.

“Linked well with Redpath but guilty of over-playing deep inside his own half on a couple of occasions. On another day, the yellow card could have been costly, but Scotland coped well without their talisman.”

Coach Gregor Townsend said that the squad was confident going into the match with a ‘calmness’ surrounding the side.

“There was a calmness on and off the field. I don’t know whether it’s because there’s no crowd.

“It felt like the players were in control today. We had a bit of defence to do at the end but the players stood up well. I’m very proud of the performance and there’s a lot more to come from the players.”

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'Pure lunacy': Scotland fans have collective heart attack over Finn Russell's 'brain fart' that could have tipped the result in England's favour