Simon Shaw says England are “not the polished article” as they prepare to do battle with fierce rivals Scotland in the Six Nations.
Eddie Jones has taken England from World Cup failures to second in the rankings with 24 wins from 25 matches since the wily Australian was installed as head coach.
The Six Nations holders are on course to become the first team to win the tournament outright three years in a row after beating Italy and Wales in their first two matches.
England travel to Murrayfield for an eagerly-anticipated Calcutta Cup clash on Saturday and Shaw says there is room for improvement ahead of what he expects to be a big test in Edinburgh.
Speaking at the Tournoi des 6 Stations Orangina, the former England lock told Omnisport: “I think whilst performances thus far have been more than adequate, they are still not the polished article by any means.
“I’ve played up there [Murrayfield] twice and lost twice. It’s a very tough proposition, the Scottish pride was dented in that first game against Wales after going into it very confident.
“Scotland’s number one game is always playing England at home, so it will be a very difficult one.”
Ex-British and Irish Lion Shaw wants to see England set the tone with another strong start, just as they did in a tense 12-6 victory over Wales at Twickenham before the break.
“I think in some senses they should approach it how they approached the Wales game. They need to control the tempo of the game, almost squeeze the Scottish into some poor decisions in their own half.” he added.
“Try and get in front early doors, as they did against Wales, so they can make their opposition have to try and chase the game.”
– Shaw was among the former internationals competing in the Tournoi des 6 Stations Orangina [The 6 Stations Tournament] on the snow in the French Alps from February 12-18. For more information on the event visit http://tournoides6stations.com/en/
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