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Ford tells Scotland to earn respect

Ross Ford insists the only way for Scotland to gain England's respect will be to outplay them in next weekend's Calcutta Cup clash.

Scotland head coach Andy Robinson last week accused England of being "arrogant" during the sides' World Cup clash in October, with him and his players feeling disrespected by the antics of their arch-rivals, who sealed a last-gasp victory in the decisive Pool B clash in New Zealand.

Ford, who was on Tuesday named Scotland's captain for the RBS 6 Nations, said: "It is what it is. For me, the focus now is about earning respect from teams by our performances. That starts from us delivering on the pitch."

He added: "That's the only way, for me, now the team moves forward."

Ford will lead his side out at a packed Murrayfield a week on Saturday determined to avenge that World Cup defeat and become the first Scotland captain to lift the Calcutta Cup for four years.

"As a kid, you always want to lead your country out and win," said the Edinburgh hooker. "It doesn't change now that I'm here.

"I always go into every game looking to win it and looking to perform well.

"So I just have to make sure that I go on the pitch and I do my job and perform under pressure at the right times."

Ford was given the nod as captain after Kelly Brown was ruled out of the tournament through injury, and Robinson, who was determined to give the job to someone guaranteed a place in the side, bristled at suggestions the 27-year-old was not natural leadership material.

After Ford was asked whether he needed to become more vocal in the dressing room, Robinson interjected, saying: "You've not been in our dressing room. Ross is actually pretty vocal in that dressing room, and makes some clear points."


From Belfast Telegraph