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Ford Saves England’s Blushes

Ford Saves England’s Blushes

Replacement fly-half George Ford scored a late try as England salvaged a 38-38 draw against battling Scotland. After Wales had sealed the Grand Slam, the Red Rose knew their Six Nations title hopes were dead but they still started like a team with a point to prove as Jack Nowell, Tom Curry, Joe Launchbury and Jonny May ran in tries.

Owen Farrell kept the scoreboard ticking over to make it 31-0 but a try from Stuart McInally gave the Scots hope heading into the break and they came out firing as scores from Darcy Graham (2) and Magnus Bradbury tightened the contest before Finn Russell levelled things on the hour.

Related: Scotland Sweating Over Russell Knock

That marked the biggest comeback in Six Nations history and Scotland’s travelling support were sent into rapture when Sam Johnson brilliantly gave the visitors the lead with four minutes left after a slaloming solo effort. England piled the pressure on but the penalties told – even as the clock had gone red – and eventually, it was a numbers game as Ford crossed under the posts before converting to equal the scores.

It all meant that the Calcutta Cup was shared for the 16th time, much to the dismay of Scottish fly-half Russell, who was “gutted” after the game. “At half-time everyone would have written Scotland off,” he told ITV. “For us to come out and have a second half like that shows the character the boys have. I’m just so disappointed we didn’t manage to finish it off at the end.

“The first half we got caught off guard then in the second half we had nothing to lose and we played our rugby. We played good Scottish rugby the second half. “There were a lot of injuries but the boys who have filled in have been outstanding. The whole campaign has been frustrating. We’ve had close games and not played at our best sometimes. But it’s a good way to finish with the Calcutta Cup back in Scotland.”

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