Scots show Braveheart spirit as England toil to victory


England made hard work of beating Scotland 38 – 12 at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry on Saturday evening.

Early handling errors from both teams, but Scotland made a more confident start than last week against Australia,

Kane Linnet opened the scoring after six minutes, after a slick move saw him use his power to cross on the left.

Good defence kept the English attack out, as the hosts looked to force their way through the middle.

The Scotland defence was more solid and organised than in Hull, though, and they stifled the English attacks.

They also threatened England, with a motivated Danny Brough kicking deftly for good chases.

And they scored again when Matty Russell produced a splendid piece of acrobatic skill to touch down in the left corner after 23 minutes, the video referee taking an age to confirm the score.

Brough missed both conversions from out wide, however, giving Scotland an 8 – 0 lead.

England managed to strike back in the 26th minute through Elliott Whitehead after a move on the right. Gale calmly added the extras.

England finally managed to take the lead after 36 minutes, after a clever kick from Gale sent Whitehead over to touch down under the posts.

Gale added the extras to make it 12 – 8, but the English could count themselves lucky to be in front at half time.

The second half began tentatively for both teams, with the Scots once again defending well. Brough was kicking from the 40m line, looking for 40-20s, but couldn’t quite find his range.

Mark Percival put England further ahead on the left in the 46th minute with a try, Gale missed the kick, and England led 16 – 8.

A lucky bounce allowed Ryan Hall to score in the 54th minute after a George Williams grubber, with the Leeds winger producing a clinical finish.

Gale converted in fine style to make the scoreline 22 – 8, heading into the final quarter.

Brough recerived a yellow card in the 57th minute for holding on in the tackle.

England took immediate advantage with McGillvary crosssing on the right wing, after some slick passing from Jonny Lomax. Gale missed the extras.

Scotland were beginning to tire now, and losing Brough at that stage was a real blow.

Sam Burgess broke through the middle to put Gale through on 62 minutes with the halfback also adding the extras to make it 32 – 8.

But Scotland revived, and had another slight resurgence when Brough returned, and Dale Ferguson scored their third try in the 69th minute.

Brough missed the relatively straightforward conversion, leaving the scoreline 32 – 12 with 10 minutes left.

The game was petering out to a quiet conclusion, but Scotland went to sleep in the last two minutes, and successive penalties allowed Liam Farrell to score a final try.

Final score: 38 – 12

Man of the Match  – George Williams (England)