Jones hails England's application after hard-fought win over Scotland


Eddie Jones praised England's application and composure after they started the new era under his leadership with a hard-fought 15-9 win over Scotland in the Six Nations.

Tries from George Kruis and Jack Nowell proved enough for England to retain the Calcutta Cup despite long periods of pressure from Scotland at Murrayfield.

Scotland - who have not scored a try in their last six home matches with England in the Six Nations - were restricted to three Greig Laidlaw penalties.

And Jones - who took over from Stuart Lancaster following England's dismal showing at the Rugby World Cup last year - was delighted with the effort of his players.

"It was always going to be a difficult game, we knew that, we had two weeks together, virtually a new team doing new things," Jones told BBC Sport.

"I was really pleased with our application in our second half, our defence was outstanding, there was some really good individual performances."

Asked if set plays were crucial in the victory, Jones added: "Definitely. It won us the game, the line-out was very good in the second half and our scrum really came to life.

"Dan Cole showed why before the World Cup he was rated best tight-head prop in the world."

In addition to Cole, Jones also reserved praise for man of the match Billy Vunipola and skipper Dylan Hartley, whose selection as captain raised eyebrows because of his poor disciplinary record.

"He's pretty handy Billy, he's not bad is he? He played very well, work rate was fantastic, good carries, good defence," Jones said.

"We got penalised six times when we had the ball in possession, which is extraordinarily high. So it was a difficult game for him [Hartley] as captain. I thought he did really well. 

"In all honesty I always thought we were going to win the game. The only way we weren't going to win the game if we did something silly ... in the second half.

"I thought our composure under pressure [was good], we wanted to move the ball a bit more we'd been practicing that, we weren't able to do it. We had to play a different way and that's pragmatic football."

Hartley, meanwhile, said: "Good start for us, wasn't the prettiest, it was physical, the result's the thing that mattered for us. We're happy to get that one out of the way.

"We've had two weeks together, I'm pleased we've just got the victory, there's so much to improve on, come Monday there's loads to work on and we'll look forward to Italy."