England Six Nations Slideshow

Six Nations 2020: England Player Ratings Versus Scotland

Joe Large rates the individual performances from England’s win over Scotland at the weekend. Ford 5, Curry 7 – are these fair?

The most important thing was to come away with a win. England did just that and now can set their sights on back to back home games against title rivals. It was incredibly difficult to see just where we stand based on that game. The conditions were atrocious and it was difficult to stand out, but collectively England came through it. All of that is probably reflected in the ratings below.

15. George Furbank – 6
Dealt with all high balls very well indeed and chased with enthusiasm to try and regain the ball when England kicked it. Defended well when called upon. It was a shame that the game wasn’t one to allow him to showcase his attacking flair.

14. Jonny May – 6
See George Furbank’s comments.

13. Jonathan Joseph – 6
Like his centre colleague, he led the defence well and never gave Scotland a sniff. Had no chance to showcase his running skills. He had one chance to set the backs free outside him, but opted not to give what would have been a tough pass.

12. Owen Farrell – 6
Gains a point for marshalling England’s defence, which went unbroken, very authoritatively. He kicked very averagely (both off the tee and out of hand) in tricky conditions. Wasted an overlap on a rare occasion when England had one.

11. Eliot Daly – 5
Had so little to do that it is difficult to give him a rating. Decent enough catching and chasing kicks. A couple of dodgy kicks himself. Not a lot else to mention.

10. George Ford – 5
Apart from the kick that put the pressure on Stuart Hogg in the lead-up to England’s try, that facet of his game was largely average. A lot of trying to do the right thing with little execution, exemplified by his drop goal that went a fraction wide.

9. Willi Heinz – 6
Was pushing for an honorary mention in the game’s best player award in the first half. He kept the tempo high when he could and used England’s demolition runners well. The kicking game was brilliant given the conditions as well. The opposite could be said for his performance in the second half before he was taken off.

1. Mako Vunipola – 6
The scrum was solid, but I feel Joe Marler is a better option in that area. He was unable to make any decisive carries, but always offered himself. Tackled hard and tackled frequently.

2. Jamie George – 7
Gains a mark due to his accuracy at the line-out in exceptionally tricky conditions (just look at how Scotland’s malfunctioned). Aside from that, like a number of other England forwards, he worked tirelessly without being a game-breaker.

3. Kyle Sinckler – 6
Another solid showing in the set piece and a generally decent outing. Carried a little more than last week, but without a big ball carrier in the midfield or the back row, he will have to do a lot more in that department.

4. Maro Itoje – 7
Probably the runner-up in the contest for being the best player on the park. He was a nuisance at the breakdown and in the maul and a constant thorn in the side of the Scottish line-out. Without his interventions, Scotland may have been able to build that bit more pressure to get a try.

5. George Kruis – 6
An efficient, if workmanlike performance in the loose where he did what was asked of him. England did have the better of the line-out and he was commanding in this area.

6. Lewis Ludlam – 6
Part of a back row that had the better of their Scottish counterparts, but struggled to really make an impression himself. Tackled effectively and was always present without ever having a moment that changed the game.

7. Sam Underhill – 8
Excellent in the tackle, excellent at the breakdown. England were happy to play without the ball and he looked ecstatic doing the dog work for the team. Probably a fair choice for man of the match.

8. Tom Curry – 7
A much improved performance from the Sale man. He is still not an 8, but he showed his ability to learn from errors with better control from the base and more direct carrying. His work on the floor was also very good, which was a key area that had the game go England’s way.

Bench – 7
For the second week in a row, the bench helped England out when they were beginning to struggle (though last week, they were struggling from the off). Elilis Genge scores the decisive try and Ben Youngs brought the control back to England.

What did you think? Where do England stand before their home games against Wales and Ireland?

17 replies on “Six Nations 2020: England Player Ratings Versus Scotland”

Unfathomably, in the S Times, S Jones gave Scotland a collectively higher player points tally than England. Reminds of the story about there being 3 types of accountant. Those whom can count & those whom can’t. Anyway, it’s as ever difficult for me to apportion individual points. I see the game as a whole & only sporadically recall stand out player actions. More difficult to do so with particularly the outside backs, whom could almost exclusively feature on defence due to lack of pill. Some of them, including the inside backs, seemed to prefer featuring by kicking it out on the full (for fun?) however. As no one especially stood out for me, a collective team average of 6 might suffice? I don’t really get this Farrell’s marshalling of the defence business though. Did he actually, or did they marshall themselves? I just didn’t see obvious instructions from Farrell in this regard. The line out functioned better than that of the Scots, so logically Itoje & Kruis must have played their part. However, I didn’t notice 1 being more prominent than the other, so 6 each? I read that Curry was MOTM, but other reports indicate (as here?), Underhill got this gong. Whatever, as the Scots were turned over by 21 to 7(?), then a fair amount of credit must have gone to the b/row. Apparently & particularly to the aforementioned 2, as Ludlum appeared to talk a better game than playing 1. Again though, I didn’t really see the 2 acclaimed loosies as being conspicuously outstanding at the breakdown. Maybe it’s me though & they, by & large, did warrant their 7, 8 scores? I gave S Jones of the ST’s an 8/10 however.. for ‘talking’ an even better game than the Luddite. Perhaps that took a bit of doing?


Don, unless you were in a coffee shop reading a free copy, you have given S Jones what he wants… Your dollar for his cr@p journalism.

He lost me a long time ago.


Habit SJ. I read other stuff too though. I did email an article into The ST’s recently lamenting Jones’ condoning of & not condemning Saracens for tainting rugby. Although I received an acknowledgment from their Sports sub editor, they didn’t print it. So, the extracter of a living off, not a contributor to, the game marches on, paying his milkman & mortgage, which is presumably his primary objective anyway. So, take yr point. Still galling though, which is likely another attention seeking points of his? Regds.


Again S.Jones and the Times take negative feedback as engagement and positive thing hence why journalist such as Piers Morgan exist
Occasionally they might go a step too far like Katie Hopkins did but its all click bait these days


I read that You tuber Josh Pieters persuaded Katie Hopkins to fly out to Prague & accept a Campaign to Unite the Nation Trophy award. She didn’t notice the acronym behind her.


Probably would have given the whole pack an extra point for their collective effort. That was where the game was won. Ugly conditions made it an ugly game but all of those forwards worked their socks off and outshone their opposite numbers. Can’t ask for more really.

One question that has gone under the radar is: what the hell is up with Sinckler? He’s holding his own at scrum time but the ebullient carrying that marked him out as special has all but vanished.


I have noticed that too. We have really missed those bullocking runs of his…Dunno what is up with him…
He isn’t as aggressive in defence either…


Don’t know if his contract change from Quins to Briz is playing on his mind but to me he seemed to take to loss in the final very hard given his KO and it could be a case of getting himself out of the mental funk of coulda woulda shoulda


Did anyone else think Genge looked like he wanted to kill someone after his try? It looked like Itoje was holding him to stop him kicking off.


Whilst awaiting further 6N posts, trawled through & came across The Guardian’s player ratings. As I understand England had more territory, possession, with their scrum & lineout faring better than those of France, why did it go wrong? The French defence has already been mentioned as 1 reason. However, when comparing the back row ratings, Cros, Ollivon & Alldrit scored 7, 9 & 8 respectively, whilst Lawes, Underhill & Curry rated 6, 6 & 5. So, were England outplayed at a perceived strength, in the loose? Looked like it. France sure took their 3 chances, with the already maligned Youngs falling off his tackle on Rattez for the latter’s try. DuPont clearly outplayed Youngs & seemed pivotal to France in thought, deed & speed. England also kicked inappropriately & inaccurately. Ford, for instance, should deal with this aspect of his game better now, especially with his team were under the cosh. Unnecessarily handed initiative back to France. Farrell? Set a jittery tone when in possession. Even the almost single handed redeemer, Jonny May, stood off the tackle, arms imploringly skyward, waiting for the whistle when Ollivon(?) scored. All these facets added up to England’s demise. With the greater share of ball & ground, could they have pulled this one off with better accuracy & innovation? Quite possibly. OTOH, France were v hard to break down, even though their lineout & particularly later on, their scrum, faltered. IOW, in the end, the positives outweighed the negatives. Also, Jones might have been better advised to have got his team to play a better, or ‘brutalising’, game than talking one.


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