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Wednesday, 2 October, 2002, 09:41 GMT 10:41 UK
Defeating the auld enemy
Scotland's XV in 1990
Scotland's intrepid 15 line up before the game

In the fourth of BBC Sport Online's weekly rugby union series, former Scotland flanker John Jeffrey looks back at the 1990 Grand Slam - and reveals what happened to the Calcutta Cup trophy in 1988.


England arrived in Edinburgh in 1990 believing they had the Grand Slam in the bag.

But as Will Carling's men waltzed into Murrayfield, a White Shark going by the name of John Jeffrey lay in wait.

An English pack led by the tenacious Brian Moore, and a backline boasting the talents of Jeremy Guscott, Simon Halliday and Rory Underwood had taken the Five Nations by storm.

And where England had strolled, Scotland crawled.


Gavin wanted us to go out brandishing claymores
John Jeffrey
A 13-9 win against a poor Welsh side in Cardiff was hardly great preparation for the mighty English, but as Jeffrey recalls, that was when Will Carling's men lost the plot.

"When we arrived at Murrayfield in 1990 the English team were already on the pitch, and they were all standing having pictures with their wives and girlfriends," he said.

"It's nothing to do with the philosophy of having sex before a game, but we'd never be near our partners until after a game.

"But here they were, taking pictures of where they were going to score the winning try, and we could see then that their minds weren't focused on the game."

"I honestly think that the English team believed all the press that was written about them, that they only had to turn up to win."

As England's players thought about the party afterwards, Scotland's sat quietly in the changing room running through their game-plan.

Four of the side's senior players, Jeffrey, captain David Sole, Finlay Calder and Gavin Hastings had discussed their plans in the weeks running up to the game.

Sole was keen to do something that would ignite the Murrayfield crowd as they entered the arena - and suggested that they walk on.

"Finlay pointed out that they had walked out with the Lions in 1989 and ended up getting beat, so it didn't always work," Jeffrey said.

"Gavin wanted us to go out brandishing claymores twirling round our head, which was a wee bit over the top.

"So we decided to do the walk, not only to excite the crowd but also to keep our concentration, because it was so easy to be carried away by the noise."

Scotland captain David Sole
David Sole walks his team out onto the turf
It was the first year Scotland had been allowed to sing Flower of Scotland in the Five Nations - before it was always the national anthem.

The combination was explosive, and once Tony Stanger followed up a Gavin Hastings punt to score in the right hand corner England's self belief was shot, and they lost 13-7.

"We were very fortunate that England made some horrendous captaincy decisions," Jeffrey said.

"They could have been well ahead by half-time but they were trying to go for tries the whole time when they should have been kicking penalties."

Whatever the flaws in Carling's decision making that afternoon, the day belonged to the Scots, who liked nothing better than a chance to relive Culloden and Bannockburn on the pitch.


Myself and Dean did take it [Calcutta Cup] out on the town, and it came back damaged
John Jeffrey
"We love to beat the English - in general it is the pathetic Scottish psyche that we have a huge chip on our shoulder," he said.

"There was an arrogance about the English team that we didn't like."

For Jeffrey, the win was also a chance to get re-acquainted with the Calcutta Cup - the last time he had held it in Scotland was all a bit of a blur.

Two years earlier Jeffrey and England No.8 Dean Richards had taken the Cup onto the streets of Edinburgh - after emptying its whisky filled contents over English hooker Brian Moore.

No-one can quite remember what happened to the cup, save that it needed 1000 of repair work, and Jeffery received a six-month playing ban for his efforts.

"Myself and Dean did take it out on the town, and it came back damaged," he said.

An SRU official said it looked like a plate after Jeffrey and Richards had finished with it in 1989
The Calcutta Cup: First used as a football in 1988
"For that we have to hold our hands out and take our punishment, it's not something I'm particularly proud of, but what riles me is the disparity in the punishment between myself and Deano.

"I got banned for six months and the RFU decided to ban Deano for one match, which basically highlighted why people could not be doing with the amateurs who ruled both rugby unions."

Jeffrey's dislike of the SRU hierarchy was well known, and it was exacerbated when the officials lined up to bask in the team's achievements at the post match reception.

"The same people that banned me for six months were encouraging me to touch the cup and get my picture taken next to it," he said.

"These were the same people that two years earlier had been sitting on the bench to put me away, and I just thought that was typically two-faced of them."

Not that they tempered Jeffrey's celebrations - which continued long into the early hours.

After defeating the auld enemy, little else mattered.

PART TWO: Jeffrey on the architects behind Scotland's golden years, and the influx of "foreign sporrans".

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
Pre match build-up
"The whole of Scotland was behind us"
On fooling the English
"They thought they only had to turn up to win"

Rugby heroes
Links to more International stories are at the foot of the page.


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