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Bullish Jones wants English show of strength

 

By Duncan Bech

Eddie Jones has taunted Scotland on the eve of Saturday's Calcutta Cup showdown by responding to their failure to win at Twickenham since '83 with the quip - "1883?"

A third Six Nations crown of the Jones era is the prize at stake when England seek a victory that, combined with Welsh failure to complete the Grand Slam against Ireland, would propel them to the summit of the northern hemisphere.

Injury-ravaged Scotland are 14-1 underdogs as a disappointing tournament limps to a close at a venue where they have not won since 1983 - a sorry run spanning 17 Tests - and it is that statistic that Jones seized upon to mock Gregor Townsend's side.

"Since 1883? 1983, OK. If we impose our game on Scotland it'll be pretty tough for them," England's head coach said.

"We're not playing Mars or Pluto, we're playing Scotland. They've got passion and play the game a certain way.

"It'll be about which side comes out with most intensity and desire and that'll be us.

"We want to be the best team in the world and we know we're not the best team in the world, but we've got an opportunity to show that we're the best team in the Six Nations. And we're not going to miss that opportunity.

"We're nowhere near our best, we're just slowly getting there. We'll be at our best for the Six Nations on Saturday. There will be a bit of an explosion."

For all the misery inflicted upon Scotland at Twickenham, they enter the 137th instalment of the oldest rivalry in international rugby in possession of the Calcutta Cup after prevailing 25-13 at Murrayfield a year ago.

Ben Youngs will become England's most capped scrum-half on Saturday with 85 appearances, making his debut against at Murrayfield nine years ago.

"Whenever you play Scotland, (the niggle) is as much bred in us as it is bred in them. It's a huge fixture because there's a huge amount of history," Youngs said.

"We want the best performance of the tournament so far."

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