England secured a second victory in the defence of their Six Nations title over a battling Scotland at Murrayfield.

But the world champions failed to find the fluency of their opening win in Italy, despite scoring four tries.

Ben Cohen, Iain Balshaw and Josh Lewsey all grabbed soft scores, Danny Grewcock weighing in with a fourth and Paul Grayson adding 15 points with the boot.

Chris Paterson landed two penalties and converted Simon Danielli’s second-half try for the Scots.

It was Scotland’s first try against England for four years but despite the scoreline, the home side competed admirably with their vaunted visitors.

They started bristling with purpose and were rewarded with a well-struck penalty from Paterson after barely two minutes.

But they allowed England to find their feet when Jason Robinson, employed at first receiver, sent a chip kick over the defence.

Full-back Ben Hinshelwood failed to deal with a wicked bouncing ball, allowing Cohen an easy touchdown which Grayson promptly improved.

But Scotland refused to be cowed, and might have scored themselves in the 18th minute only for Danielli to spill the ball under Robinson’s tackle.

A high cross-kick from Paterson also tested the renowned English defence, and the stand-off punished a Grewcock infringement with a second penalty.

But Grayson kicked another penalty before England grabbed a fortuitous second try before the half-hour.

Grewcock appeared to knock on after losing the ball in the tackle but Balshaw swiftly hacked ahead and held off Chris Cusiter to touch down.

Grayson’s conversion put the visitors into a somewhat flattering 20-6 lead, although they powered through 18 phases without reward before the interval.

Flanker Jason White lifted Scottish spirits with a thunderous tackle on Trevor Woodman before half-time.

But England effectively sealed victory six minutes after the interval with another opportunist try, Lewsey charging down Paterson’s kick for his 15th try in 20 Tests.

The Scots finally earned a slice of fortune however when Balshaw failed to deal with Danielli’s chip ahead and the Bath wing collected the bounce to score.

Paterson’s conversion made it 25-13, but Grayson banged over another penalty after Simon Taylor was sent to the sin-bin for a blatant professional foul.

England promptly took advantage of an under-manned Scottish pack as Grewcock powered over for their fourth try with 14 minutes left.

Grayson converted to complete a 15-point personal haul, before the match petered out.


B Hinshelwood; S Danielli, T Philip, B Laney, S Webster; C Paterson, C Cusiter; T Smith, G Bulloch, B Douglas, S Murray, S Grimes, J White , S Taylor, C Mather.
R Russell, G Kerr, N Hines, A Hogg, M Blair, D Parks, A Henderson

I Balshaw, J Lewsey, W Greenwood, J Robinson, B Cohen, P Grayson, A Gomarsall, T Woodman, S Thompson, P Vickery, D Grewcock, B Kay, C Jones, R Hill, L Dallaglio (capt).


M Regan, J Leonard, S Shaw, A Sanderson, M Dawson, O Barkley, H Paul.