Updated: Wednesday, 05 February 2014 09:40 | By Agence France-Presse

Twelvetrees tells England to play 'smart' against Scots

Billy Twelvetrees believes playing a "smart" game will be the key to getting England's Six Nations campaign back on track when they face Scotland in Edinburgh.


Twelvetrees tells England to play 'smart' against Scots

England's flanker Chris Robshaw (L) looks up from a scrum during the Six Nations rugby union match between France and England on February 1, 2014 at the Stade de France in Saint-Denis, north of Paris - by Martin Bureau

Both teams will be even more desperate for victory than usual following first round defeats, with England losing out to a late try in a 26-24 defeat by France in Paris and Scotland well-beaten 28-6 away to Ireland.

However, form can often go out of the window in the Calcutta Cup where raw passion and thundering physical effort are a given specially when, as is the case this weekend, the fixture is at Scotland's Murrayfield base.

But England centre Twelvetrees said playing with heads as well as hearts would decide which one of the teams won the latest edition of rugby union's oldest international fixture.

And the Gloucester playmaker was adamant England could still follow the example of Six Nations champions Wales, who won last season's tournament despite an opening day defeat by Ireland.

"We still have massive belief we can win the title," Twelvetrees said Tuesday as England coach Stuart Lancaster named an unchanged 23. 

"We're bitterly disappointed to lose our first game, but we've got four games in front of us that we want to win. 

"It starts this weekend against Scotland, who will be hugely frustrated by their loss in Ireland on Sunday. 

"They will be hugely motivated by a Calcutta Cup game against England at Murrayfield. 

"It's going to be hugely physical and the team that is smarter will win," the 25-year-old added. 

"We are fully aware of what they are going to bring to the game. We've looked at how we can nullify that and assert ourselves in the as well." 

Twelvetrees won the first of his nine caps in last season's 38-18 defeat of Scotland at Twickenham, marking his debut with a try.

But he did not expect England to have things all their own way this weekend.

"I've got fond memories of last year against Scotland when I made my Test debut," he said. "But they're a different team than they were last year and it will be a different encounter away from home. 

"They'll be hugely physical at the breakdown, trying to slow down our ball and make it a physical game."

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