England 61 Scotland 21: Scots swept away in humiliating rout to England

© GettyJonathan Joseph goes through for England's first try in the Calcutta Cup match at Twickenham.
Jonathan Joseph goes through for England's first try in the Calcutta Cup match at Twickenham.

Scotland suffered a Twickenham nightmare to match any over the 34 long years of failure at England’s home of rugby as they were sliced to ribbons by a rampant English side.

Jonathan Joseph’s hat-trick of tries helped England to regain the RBS Six Nations title a week early, and they will go for a second successive Grand Slam against Ireland in Dublin having been barely troubled by a Scottish side that spectacularly flopped in their biggest test to date.

Scotland conceded 60 points in a Six Nations game for the first time and weren’t helped with key injuries to Stuart Hogg and his replacement Mark Bennett in the first half, but the defensive performance was at times embarrassing.

England’s first three tries came from the same simple backs move that found a huge hole in Scotland’s midfield defence that hadn’t been evident in their first three games of the championship.

Joseph scored twice and gave the assist to Anthony Watson for the third, and then completed his hat-trick two minutes into the second half as the Scots barely laid a finger on him all day.

Huw Jones scored two tries for the Scots and Gordon Reid another, but it was a chastening humiliation for them after such a bright start to the championship.

The optimism for their first Twickenham win since 1983 evaporated as quickly as the sunshine over south west London with a catalogue of disasters, some down to bad luck but many self-inlicted, in a nightmare first half.

England were handed a one-man advantage almost immediately when Fraser Brown tip tackled Elliot Daly, escaping a red only because the England wing landed on his back, but getting a ten-minute break with barely two minutes played.

And England immediately capitalised with Joseph getting outside Alex Dunbar and between Huw Jones to race 30 metres for the opening score, Owen Farrell converting.

The fit-again centre then added two penalties, Scotland’s retaliation amounting only to a Russell drop goal being charged won and Stuart Hogg tripping over a team-mates leg when a gap opened up.

Yet even worse was to come from Scotland, Hogg departing for a head injury assessment and not returning, and his replacement Mark Bennett suffering a leg injury in his first action. The Glasgow centre also exited and Scotland were forced to put Ali Price on the wing with Henry Pyrgos going to scrum-half.

And on the next attack England tried the same move off lineout ball that brought them their first try and it worked like a dream again for Joseph to slide through for his second score, Farrell converting.

Scotland at last got some ball to make an impact and turned down an easy penalty for a lineout move that saw Gordon Reid go under the posts for a score after half an hour, but Farrell booted his third penalty almost immediately to take England out to 23-7.

And that same move off first phase lineout ball unbelievably worked again for England with five minutes left in the half, Joseph going through untouched but this time feeding Daly’s replacement Watson for the third try, Farrell’s conversion putting England out to 30-7 ahead at the break.

The landslide against a demoralised Scotland continued almost immediately after the break, a Russell interception saving a certain try after Nathan Hughes burst from a ruck, but the try was only delayed until Joseph ran a superb line to skate over untouched for his hat-trick.

Farrell converted and added a penalty but although Huw Jones scored after a series of good phases following a rare scrum penalty, the Scots were back staring down the barrel too quickly, a lineout maul finished by with a try for Billy Vunipola just after he came on for Hughes, Farrell adding another conversion.

Unsurprisingly the game started to fizzle out and Scotland showed some defiance with Jones’ second try, finishing well from wide out and Russell converting.

But Scotland’s lacerated defence conceded the half-century for the third time in the Six Nations almost immediately with replacement scrum-half Danny Care darting through for their sixth try, Farrell staying perfect with the boot.

England were still not satisfied and scored their seventh try of the day again through Care with the last play of the game, to match their record margin of defeat of 40 points over their old rivals and go over the 60-point threshold.

Att: 82,000

England: M Brown; J Nowell, J Joseph, O Farrell, E Daly; G Ford, B Youngs; J Marler, D Hartley (capt), D Cole; J Launchbury, C Lawes; M Itoje, J Haskell, N Hughes.

Replacements: J George for Hartley 52, M Vunipola for Marler 59, K Sinckler for Cole 62, T Wood, B Vunipola for Hughes 52, D Care for Youngs 62, B Te’o for Joseph 59, A Watson for Daly 15

Scotland: S Hogg; T Visser, H Jones, A Dunbar, T Seymour; F Russell, A Price; G Reid, F Brown, Z Fagerson; R Gray, J Gray; J Barclay (capt), H Watson, R Wilson.

Replacements: R Ford for Brown 44, A Dell for Reid 44, S Berghan for Fagerson 62, T Swinson for J Gray 75, C Du Preez for Wilson 63, H Pyrgos for Bennett 22, D Weir for Seymour 45, M Bennett for Hogg 18.

Ref M Raynal (FFR)