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Scotland 00:00 Argentina

England Under-20s snatched victory in difficult conditions over Scotland

Last Updated: 01/02/13 10:30pm

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England Under-20s opened up their Six Nations title defence with a gutsy 15-6 win over their Scotland counterparts in Plymouth.

England outscored the visitors two tries to nil in tricky conditions, while Henry Slade added a conversion and a penalty.

The hosts were awarded a first-half penalty try while Luke Cowan-Dickie powered over late on to seal the win.

Scotland had taken a 3-0 lead through the boot of Tommy Allan before England hit back.

With Scotland down to 14 men, England took full advantage with a series of scrums close to the posts. And when Scotland infringed one too many times, England were awarded a penalty try - with Slade adding a simple conversion.

Barged through

Scotland, though, responded with a penalty just before the break from Allen to cut the gap to just one point.

There was little to choose between the two sides in the second half, with Slade giving England some breathing space with a penalty - although the TMO was needed to rule whether the kick was good or not.

England finally made sure of the win with six minutes left when Cowan-Dickie barged through three attempted tackles before reaching over for the try.

England captain Jack Clifford said: "We didn't play as well as we can and that's a credit to Scotland.

"The pitch began to cut up and it wasn't easy to play the quick rugby we know that we can. But we're happy with the win and it gives us something to build on."

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