Ross Ford says Scotland must relish England challenge

Ross Ford has told his Scotland team-mates they should not fear another Calcutta Cup defeat to England – but instead relish the chance to rewrite the history books in Murrayfield today.
Ross Ford says Scotland must relish England challenge

The Edinburgh hooker and front-row colleague Al Dickinson are the only men in the Dark Blues’ line-up for the s RBS 6 Nations opener who have tasted victory against the Auld Enemy.

“I don’t think we should see it as a scary thing.

“It should be a challenge that the boys enjoy.

“And it shouldn’t just be about winning one or two of them – we should be looking to do it consistently.

“We should be aiming to get regular victories against a lot of nations, not just England,” said Ford.

“The consistency and performance is key to doing that but this group of boys has the talent to do it, to become a team Scotland can be proud of.”

It is 17 years since Scotland managed to claim a Championship triumph, 10 since their last opening-day win.

But both Ford and the Scots’ resource coach Nathan Hines – who played in the 2006 and 2008 wins over England – see little point in looking to the past.

Hines said: “Statistics are about the past.

“If we are just going on statistics, we may as well not play tomorrow.

“We are not worrying about the past, we are just worrying about what is happening now.

“It doesn’t matter how much history has gone before, it doesn’t make any difference to us.

“We are not playing history, we are playing England.”

James Haskell has sought to dampen expectations amid the launch of Eddie Jones’ reign by claiming England will be happy to win ugly.

“You’re limited by factors such as the opposition, weather, the field, the mood in the camp.

“We’re trying to play a brand of rugby that we can be proud of and that will get us the win.

“But ultimately all I care about is winning.

“We all want our game to evolve into that higher art form that we see in classical games, but a win’s a win. It keeps everyone happy.”

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