Six Nations

Rebuilt England down Scots

2012-02-04 21:17
Charlie Hodgson (File)

Edinburgh - England's rebuilt side beat Scotland 13-6 in an error-strewn Six Nations opener on Saturday, kicking off its defense of the title with a first win at Murrayfield since 2004.

Debut-making inside center Owen Farrell kicked eight points and recalled flyhalf Charlie Hodgson charged down Dan Parks' clearing kick 29 seconds into the second half to score the first try in the fixture since England's 35-13 victory eight years ago.

England can head into next week's test at Italy in high spirits, while Scotland could be set for another tussle with the Italians to avoid the wooden spoon if it continues to waste its openings.

"That's just the start for us," Farrell said. "We worked unbelievably hard for each other. We can still get better and better."

Parks kicked all of the points to give Scotland, which is at Wales next on Feb. 12, a 6-3 halftime lead but played a crucial role in the moment that turned the match.

The Scots had the chance to kick the ball clear of danger after receiving from the kickoff but instead chose to play it along the line.

The ball ended up in Parks' hands, almost on the line, but his attempted clearance was charged down by the outstretched arms of the chasing Hodgson and the England No. 10 grounded almost in the same movement to make it 8-3.

Farrell kicked the conversion to stretch the advantage.

Hodgson, starting his first test since June 2008, scored the last of his previous six international tries six years ago against Italy.

Replacement Greig Laidlaw thought he put Scotland back in front at the start of the final quarter but the TV official told the referee that the halfback failed to put downward pressure on the ball when he stretched out over Ben Youngs' shoulder as the pair raced back over the England tryline.

Scotland openside Ross Rennie then seemed to have created the opening for a match-winning try when he burst through a gap in the visiting defense but he delayed his inside pass and lost it in a tackle from fullback Ben Foden.

Instead of Scotland getting back in the match, Farrell then added the final points with a second penalty seven minutes before the end.

The buildup to the match centered on the youthful promise of a rebuilt England side and the need for Scotland to shed its cautious approach of recent years after losing the trusty boot of Chris Paterson to retirement.

But the first half at Murrayfield was a typically dour example of rugby union's oldest international fixture, first played in 1871 and now in its 130th edition.

Farrell, half of England's first uncapped center partnership since 2002, missed a shot at goal before putting England 3-0 ahead with a 23rd-minute kick awarded for not releasing after Parks spilled a high kick.

Parks leveled the scores moments later after new England captain Chris Robshaw was penalized for tackling off the feet and then stroked the home side into a 6-3 halftime lead after wing Chris Ashton — one of the survivors from England's Rugby World Cup squad to start the match — was whistled for not releasing.

Scorers:

England Charlie Hodgson try; Owen Farrell 2 penalties, conversion

Scotland Dan Parks 2 penalties.

Read more on:    six nations  |  rugby
NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 

Red Bull Lionheart trail run - not for the fainthearted!

Entries are open, so what are you waiting for?

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

Adventure holidays for your bucket list
Top 10 water sports to try before you die
6 impressive camping tips
LOL! The 8 stages of marathon running
Fixtures
06 February 2015
Wales v England, Cardiff 22:05
07 February 2015
Italy v Ireland, Rome 16:30
France v Scotland, Paris 19:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will win the 2014 Six Nations title?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Featured

Got something you'd like to get off your chest? Got a burning desire to air an opinion? If so, be sure to sign-up on Sport24's FORUM!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.