Paterson punishes Poms
8 Mar 2008
Chris Paterson kicked four penalties as Scotland shocked England 15-9 at Murrayfield.
The utility back has now been successful with his last 30 attempts at goal in Test rugby â€“ an amazing streak dating back to last August. All of England’s points were scored by Jonny Wilkinson, who became the highest Test points scorer with his first penalty of the day (he now has 1,099).
However, this was a poor Six Nations match that will soon be forgotten by neutrals.
England struggled to take the ball beyond three phases and their tactical kicking was abysmal (with Wilkinson the biggest culprit). They attacked Scotland’s tryline twice in the first half, but never threatened again. England’s predictable play made it easy for the hosts to defend, which they did admirably.
The Poms desperately needed someone to provide a spark â€“ someone like Danny Cipriani, who was axed by coach Brian Ashton after the 20-year-old gave match tickets to a friend at a nightclub just after midnight. By overreacting like he did, Ashton may have cost his side victory at Twickenham.
When Wilkinson kicked two penalties in the third quarter to make it 15-9, most expected England to up the tempo and really put the pressure on Scotland. Yet they never created anything against a team who began this match at the bottom of the Six Nations log.
Incredibly, England replacement flyhalf Charlie Hodgson booted the ball deep into Scotland’s half when there were 40 seconds to go. That, more than anything, summed up the visitors’ display.
Scotland â€“ Penalties: Chris Paterson (4), Dan Parks.
England â€“ Penalties: Jonny Wilkinson (3).
By Simon Borchardt