Scotland v England: Jonny Gray wants to see Murrayfield rocking out for Calcutta Cup clash


Jonny Gray has fond memories of watching and playing in the Six Nations, and hopes Scotland will have BT Murrayfield rocking out when England visit on Saturday.

Scotland claimed a famous 11-6 victory over England at Twickenham in last year’s tournament, and will be hoping for a similar result when they meet in Edinburgh, in front of a packed house.

And while the former Cambuslang star knows it’s going to be tough against some of his Exeter Chiefs team-mates, he says Scotland are confident going into the opener.

Scotland continues with a trip to Wales on February 12, hosts France on February 26 and then travels to Italy and Ireland in March.

Gray said: “Just looking at every game, every team in this tournament, you know how tough it’s going to be.

“England is first; We know how difficult it is going to be, with the talent and the depth that they have.

“Playing with some of those guys who are my team-mates now, I get to see first-hand how good they are, and playing against some of these guys in the Premiership has also been a great experience for me and I’ve learned a lot. lot.

“We know how difficult that challenge is going to be, but at the same time we are a confident camp.

“We know we have to prepare very well because England are a great talent, but there is enormous confidence in the team and we hope to prepare well and get a win on Saturday.”

Gray says he really can’t believe he’s involved in the Six Nations, having watched games growing up.

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“I think it’s tremendously exciting, just the tournament itself – everyone has memories of it, how big the competition is,” he said.

“The earliest memories for me are going to my local club, Cambuslang, to watch the games and how excited we were, and trying to catch a bus to some of the games and stuff.

“Being involved in this is very special and it still feels surreal to be a part of it, but I am privileged.

“The Six Nations is such an exciting tournament, it’s a real buzz in general, but you see how tough and competitive it is.

Gray, from East Kilbride, has enjoyed training with Scotland
Gray, from East Kilbride, has enjoyed training with Scotland

“It’s such a special experience, and playing at BT Murrayfield is amazing.

“It’s a great emotion and I hope we can get off to a good start.

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“It’s going to be a huge challenge against England but to have crowds back at BT Murrayfield is huge.

“When you talk about those memories and you remember going to those games, the atmosphere is a big part of that, and the places that you travel to… it’s such a privilege to be a part of it.

“I’m very lucky to do it, and if I get selected, to be a part of it again will be great.”

Scotland finished fourth in the competition last year, and Gray hopes they can build on that, but says the talent coming out is incredible.

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“It was good last week when we got together,” he said. “There are a couple of new faces, and it’s good to be back to see everyone and the coaches again, and to be stuck in training.

“When you look at Scottish rugby at the moment, the depth that they have, the young talent that is coming out, it’s really exciting.

“[Building on last year’s tournament] it’s something we talk about, not just from the last Six Nations campaign, but from all the experiences we had, including at the World Cup.

“Every time we meet we have to improve, and we know that when we are in camp, these sessions have very limited time.

“We know we have to improve and we know we have to prepare.”

Gray says donning Scotland’s dark blue remains ‘surreal’ despite plying his trade in the Premiership, and is grateful for his opportunities.

Gray is looking forward to playing in front of the fans again.
Gray is looking forward to playing in front of the fans again.

He said: “It still feels surreal, to be honest, and I feel very lucky.

“I owe a lot to the people who have gotten me to where I am now, from coaches to family and friends, especially my grandmother, but I wouldn’t want to name anyone or single out anyone because I would miss too many people. .

“I was very lucky to have many good mentors from Cambuslang to Glasgow, and now working in Exeter.

“I am very lucky that in all settings, from when I was young until now, I have worked with great people who have helped me improve my game.

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“Going down to Exeter, I like to think I’ve learned a lot. I know I still have a lot of work to do and a lot to learn in my game, but I enjoy my rugby.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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