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2009 Six Nations
7 Feb-21 March

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Johnson pleased with England victory

England manager Martin Johnson was a happy man after ending his first Six Nations in charge on a winning note against Scotland at Twickenham.

Hopes were high after beating France 34-10 but England regained the Calcutta Cup with a more modest 26-12 win.

"After last week we said we could play better and not have the points - we did that today," he told BBC Sport.

"We were disappointed to concede long-range penalties which kept them in it but held our nerve to finish them off."

England lost Harry Ellis and Phil Vickery to injury early in the match, with try-scorer Ugo Monye following them out of action in the second half, and Johnson said this had taken a toll.

This is a side hell-bent on improvement - we're pushing as hard as we can to progress quickly

England captain Steve Borthwick

"Injuries disrupted us and we lacked a cutting edge in the second half.

"It was never going to be 29-0 at half time, that was unrealistic. We were particularly good in the second half of the first half and we had to play for the full 80 minutes - I quite enjoyed that."

Tries by Monye and Riki Flutey helped England to a 15-3 lead at half-time, and England needed a drop-goal by Danny Care and late try by Mathew Tait to make sure of victory.

"There was a lot of fatigue in the last 20 minutes and we didn't get any penalties to kick in the second half, so we had to score that try to seal it," he said.

Johnson described his first Six Nations as manager as "interesting and eventful", and said the team could take plenty of lessons for the future from the experience.

Borthwick praises team after 'tough' win

"We've made some progress with our attacking game. We've scored three tries today which means the total is 16 which is good. There were just the two close losses (to Wales and Ireland) which we need to turn into wins."

England captain Steve Borthwick said it was vital the team followed up the win over France with another, and that it had been a hard-fought win.

"Scotland came within a score of us and pushed us very hard. They outplayed us last season so it was very important that we got the win this season," he told BBC Sport.

"It was a tough game, they competed tremendously hard and never gave up - they pushed us as far as they could. We knew it would be tough, it was important we backed up last week with a win.

"This is a side hell-bent on improvement - we're pushing as hard as we can to progress quickly."

Away from the game, Johnson denied newspaper reports that Danny Cipriani was not involved in the Six Nations because of an alleged incident at an England training camp.

"I can categorically deny that. There was no physical confrontation," he said.

When asked if there had been a verbal one, he added: "Not what you would describe as a confrontation.

"It's completely wrong to say he was not part of the Six Nations because of that. He's been in the squad the whole way through."



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see also
England v Scotland match stats
31 Jan 08 |  Rugby Union
Hadden non-committal over future
21 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
England 26-12 Scotland
21 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
England unchanged for Scots visit
18 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
Borthwick set on Scotland revenge
18 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
England 34-10 France
15 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
Ireland 14-13 England
28 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Wales 23-15 England
14 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
England 36-11 Italy
07 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Scots are behind Hadden - Blair
19 Mar 09 |  Scottish
Gray replaces Barclay for Scots
18 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
Hadden to discover fate in April
18 Mar 09 |  Scottish
Scotland 15-22 Ireland
14 Mar 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland 26-6 Italy
28 Feb 09 |  Scottish
France 22-13 Scotland
14 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland 13-26 Wales
08 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union


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