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Harley calls for consistency

Scotland lock Rob Harley insists the Dark Blues can finish their RBS 6 Nations off on a high if they can stretch their 20-minute blitz against England to an 80-minute onslaught.

Vern Cotter's men host Ireland on Saturday knowing defeat will leave them with a disastrous whitewash for the third time in 11 years.

But Glasgow forward Harley is taking hope from the promising spell at the end of the first half last weekend where his side stormed back from Jonathan Joseph's early score to grab a 13-10 half-time lead.

Mark Bennett finished off a superb move before a pair of penalties from skipper Greig Laidlaw nudged them in front at the break.

But Scotland failed to add a single point after the interval and slumped to a 25-13 defeat in London as England stepped up a level.

Now Harley insists the Scots will only be able to dent Ireland's title push next weekend if they can repeat their brief moment of dominance down south for the full match at Murrayfield.

He said: "It was a very, very fast Test match on Saturday - possibly the quickest I've ever played. England came at us with huge pace and they moved the ball really well.

"Their dangerous attacking players were pushing them forward and it took some exceptional defence from us a couple of times to stop them building a bigger lead in that first half.

"But I thought we showed great character getting back into the game. We put pressure on them and started to play our own game.

"We got the off-loads going and that's how we got our try - we moved the ball and played quickly.

"Next week is a massive test and it's important we do the same against Ireland that we did in that second quarter against England.

"That will be the big focus for us this next week. We'll get a boost from going home to BT Murrayfield in front of our own fans but we need to take the bar that we set with the good things we did at Twickenham and make that the standard for the whole 80 minutes.

"It gives us something to build for and we can definitely take the positives from Saturday's match before hopefully ending the Championship on a high."

Defeat in the English capital follows narrow losses to France, Wales and Italy but despite that miserable set of results, Harley insists Scotland are moving forward.

He said: "The coach spoke after the game in London about making the little improvements that will turn those tight losses into wins.

"We have been giving ourselves chances. We led at Twickenham at half-time but we need to step up our level at bit more so we finish off these chances and do not let teams back at us."

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