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5 things we learned from Scotland v England

Published 06/02/2016

England head coach Eddie Jones started with a win.
England head coach Eddie Jones started with a win.

England opened the Eddie Jones era with a 15-9 RBS 6 Nations victory over Scotland.

Here Press Association Sport's Duncan Bech examines five things learnt from the game.

1. MORE RESPONSIBILITY FOR BILLY

Billy Vunipola has been given a more prominent role by Jones and he responded with a man of the match performance. Jones believes he can become the best number eight in the world and on the evidence of his 80 minutes at Murrayfield, the Australian may well be right.

2. HARTLEY COULD BE AN INSPIRED CHOICE

Appointing Dylan Hartley as captain for the Six Nations was controversial considering a lengthy rap sheet comprising more than a year in suspensions, but he is a natural leader who clearly has the support of his team-mates. The hooker was strong in the set-piece - just what England needed after the World Cup.

3. PRAGMATISM RULES

"Pragmatic" was the word Jones used to describe England's playing style during his reign and there was plenty of evidence of that. Once it became clear that the expansive style was not working, the Red Rose became more conservative in their tactics and profited with a commanding second half.

4. OLD FRAILTIES REMAIN

Jones' predecessors have proved unable to correct a string of recurring problems - the breakdown, poor discipline and disjointed back play. Clearly improving in these areas will be a long-term project.

5. SCOTLAND MUST TURN PROMISE INTO RESULTS

The Scots departed the World Cup at the quarter-final stage full of optimism and while they were the cuter attacking force in this match, their inability to turn chances into tries was frustrating. Coach Vern Cotter will know that with just a little more accuracy, there could have been a different outcome.

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