Calcutta Cup is ideal game for Scotland after France controversy

Pieter de Villiers says the team will put their frustration behind them and tackle England.

Pieter de Villiers: Calcutta Cup is ideal game for Scotland after France controversy SNS Group

Scotland assistant coach Pieter de Villiers says the team has put the disappointment of losing to France behind them – and are happy to focus on a clash with rivals England.

Nearly two weeks after the 20-16 defeat to France at Murrayfield, debate continues over the controversial TMO decision that denied Scotland a last-gasp match-winning try and a second consecutive Six Nations victory.

The national team is back in action in the capital on Saturday to contest the Calcutta Cup with England, and scrum coach De Villiers says the issue from the France game is now in the past and that attentino is firmly on the game ahead.

“It almost feels long ago,” de Villiers said. “A bit of time off was good for the team.

“It’s obviously been a frustration and a disappointment. We thought we had done enough to win that game but that’s the way rugby goes sometimes. The result or decision doesn’t go your way.

“We’ve definitely moved on from it and it’s the best thing for the team and for us to look forward to England and prep for that fantastic game. It’s all behind us.

“It’s important to be able to move on. It’s important to be frustrated as well. We had done enough to win that game and it’s important to know that, as much as there were things we could have done better.

“There will always be results and decisions that will go against you. It’s not the first time and won’t be the last.”

The coach said that the Scotland players were “positive and working hard” and said that the occasion was one that helped them to look ahead rather than let any resentment linger from the previous game.

“It’s Calcutta Cup, and probably the last game in Edinburgh and in front of our home crowd until the November series,” he explained.

“It’s a great rivalry and the best thing to move on from that game.”

Scotland go into the game looking for a fourth consecutive victory and when asked what the secret to their success was, De Villiers put it down to constant improvement over the last few years, though he warned that the opposition would be ready to take advantage of any weakness.

“It’s down to our consistency and growth,” he said. “We’ve grown as a team bit by bit and game after game over the last few years and we would like to keep that up. We respect England a lot.

“They’re above us in the world rankings and we respect that, they’ve had a very solid World Cup.

“They’re very tough up front. We know it will be another physical Calcutta Cup and we’re definitely looking forward to that challenge.

“I think they’ll stay true to their DNA and bring a strong battle set-piece wise. We expect them to have a strong territorial game and maybe wait for us to make some errors. We’ll prep for that and make sure that up front we’re ready for a big onslaught.”

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