What is the Calcutta Cup

Scotland celebrates with the Calcutta Cup

Heidelberg. (CPB) The first matchday of the six-nation tournament of Europe's leading rugby teams brought a big surprise. Because defending champion and vice world champion England had to admit defeat to the better Scots in Twickenham with 6:11 (6: 8) points.

1926, 1938, 1971, 1983 and 2021 - in the 150-year international history of the two neighbors, Scotland has only won five times in the "Home of Rugby" in south-west London; The cheering of the Scots was correspondingly exuberant, just stupid that the rugby pubs at home were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic and were not allowed to be in the stadium to celebrate the sensation.

At the start of the tournament, particularly strict hygiene regulations applied in the three stadiums. The players sang the national anthems with a safety distance of a good two meters, then gasped for 80 minutes at close range and rubbed the sweat on their faces head to head in the crowd. Funny too: There was actually not a single functionary to present the Scots with the Calcutta Cup, which has been played annually since 1883, which is why Captain Stuart Hogg simply snatched the magnificent silver can from the honor table himself ...

The English sincerely congratulated. When asked why his team lost to last year's fourth, coach Eddie Jones replied: "Because I obviously didn't prepare the team well enough." Sir Clive Woodward, who coached England to the world title in 2003, stated that Scotland had "not only had much more possession, but also a flawless defense". The hosts only scored two penalties for their captain Owen Farrell (Saracens RFC London). The Scots also got two penalties by Finn Russell (Racing 92 Paris), but the difference between victory and defeat was made by the 25-year-old South African Dulan van der Merwe on the left wing position, who was the only one in the 30th minute Trying to balance the game across the goal line.

In the opening game of the tournament, last year's second France burned down a rugby fireworks display in the Olympic Stadium in Rome and defeated the not at all bad Italians with 10:50 (3:24). In the almost deserted stadium, in which around 50 men in yellow vests guarded the empty plastic seats, the team of the two coaches Fabien Galthié and Raphael Ibanez put seven attempts by Dylan Cretin (Lyon), Gael Fickou, Teddy Thomas (both Stade Français Paris), Arthur Vincent (Montpellier), Brice Dulin (La Rochelle) and Antoine Dupont, the fabulous crush from Toulouse, who was voted "Player of the Day". Matthieu Jalibert, the playmaker from Bordeaux, hit the target with six raises and one penalty. Luca Sperandio from Treviso scored for Italy with a try and Paolo Garbisi, a 20-year-old Venetian playing for Treviso, with the raise and a penalty kick.

After the Sunday game, in which Wales celebrated a hard-fought 18:13 (6:13) victory over Ireland, the Scots and the French and the "Red Dragons" are still in the running for the Grand Slam. They scored two attempts by George North (Llanelli Scarlets) and Louis Rees-Zammit (Gloucester RFC), and Leigh Halfpenny (Llanelli) kicked the raise and three penalties between the goal posts. Ireland put a try by Tadhg Beirne (Munster), Johnny Sexton (Leinster) scored with the raise and three penalties. The Irish weakened themselves as Peter O’Mahony (Presentation College Bray & Munster) received the red card after 14 minutes for rough play.

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