6N: Title or no title, England has score to settle vs Scots

The Six Nations title might be out of reach for England at kickoff in the closing match of the tournament against Scotland at Twickenham.

Doesn't mean Eddie Jones won't still be desperate for victory in the oldest international rugby match of them all.

It still grates the England coach how the Scots celebrated their win in this fixture last year at Murrayfield.

"We might have short memories sometimes, but sometimes you have longer memories," Jones recalled, without elaborating of what exactly annoyed him.

Jones was then verbally abused and intimidated by Scotland supporters at a train station in Manchester on his way back from the game in Edinburgh. He later said he didn't feel safe traveling by public transport.

The Scots are usually the ones with a score to settle heading into the Calcutta Cup, especially away from home. They haven't won at Twickenham since 1983 — and are big underdogs this year, too, after losing its last three games and also being hit by injuries.

There isn't a single member of Gregor Townsend's playing squad who was born to see Scotland beat England away 26 years ago, 22-12.

"Those records aren't in our minds at all," Scotland flanker Magnus Bradbury said. "It's another game. We're defending the Calcutta Cup, which is massive for us."

The English have their eyes on a much grander title, but the Six Nations trophy isn't in their hands heading into the final weekend.

If unbeaten Wales beats Ireland at Cardiff in the second of the three staggered games Saturday, the Welsh will claim the Grand Slam and England will be assured of second place whatever happens at Twickenham a few hours later.

A loss for Wales, however, opens the door for England to snatch the title. England's players say they will not be watching Wales-Ireland on TV.

England's chief tormentor in last weekend's 57-14 win over Italy didn't even make it on the bench a week later.

Fiji-born winger Joe Cokanasiga was compared to All Blacks great Jonah Lomu by former England coach Sir Clive Woodward in response to a bulldozing man-of-the-match display against the Azzurri. But he has been dropped by Jones, who said he was "looking after" Cokanasiga.

"We've got a good plan in place for him," Jones said. "He'll be ready by the World Cup. I don't need to reveal my selection plans for the future but I do know he'll be ready for the World Cup.

"We don't need to rush him. We'll bring him through carefully and he's got a long career ahead of him. I've got some reasonable experience doing this."

There were four changes in all for England, with Jack Nowell replacing Cokanasiga on the right wing and Henry Slade coming in for Ben Te'o as the center partner for Manu Tuilagi. In the forwards, prop Ben Moon and flanker Mark Wilson replaced Ellis Genge and Brad Shields, respectively.

Ben Youngs will become England's most-capped scrumhalf in making his 85th appearance, one more than Danny Care on the all-time list.

The Scots, whose only won has been against Italy in the opening round, made six changes in personnel after losing to Wales 18-11 last weekend. Two of them came in the back three after injuries ruled out Tommy Seymour and Blair Kinghorn. That meant Sean Maitland was at fullback and Byron McGuigan on the left wing.



England: Elliot Daly, Jack Nowell, Henry Slade, Manu Tuilagi, Jonny May, Owen Farrell, Ben Youngs; Billy Vunipola, Tom Curry, Mark Wilson, George Kruis, Joe Launchbury, Kyle Sinckler, Jamie George, Ben Moon. Reserves: Luke Cowan-Dickie, Ellis Genge, Dan Cole, Brad Shields, Nathan Hughes, Ben Spencer, George Ford, Ben Te'o.

Scotland: Sean Maitland, Darcy Graham, Nick Grigg, Sam Johnson, Byron McGuigan, Finn Russell, Ali Price; Magnus Bradbury, Hamish Watson, Sam Skinner, Grant Gilchrist, Ben Toolis, Willem Nel, Stuart McInally (captain), Allan Dell. Reserves: Fraser Brown, Gordon Reid, Simon Berghan, Jonny Gray, Josh Strauss, Greig Laidlaw, Adam Hastings, Chris Harris.


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