Scotland 30-21 England: Duhan van der Merwe scores hat-trick in fourth straight Calcutta Cup win

Hat-trick hero: Duhan van der Merwe is the first Scottish player to score a try treble against England in the Six Nations era (Getty Images)
Hat-trick hero: Duhan van der Merwe is the first Scottish player to score a try treble against England in the Six Nations era (Getty Images)

Duhan van der Merwe’s record-breaking Calcutta Cup demolition job left England’s latest rebuild in rubble as Scotland stormed to a 30-21 victory at Murrayfield.

The powerhouse wing chiselled Scotland’s first-ever Calcutta Cup hat-trick into the annals of this historic fixture, pulverising England in the process.

The 6ft 4in monster scared the living daylights out of England with a try for the ages at Twickenham last year, swatting aside some seven would-be tacklers in Scotland’s 29-23 victory.

But somehow the 17stone giant managed to produce another all-time highlight-reel score a year down the line.

Van der Merwe had already registered a peach of a try when he raced onto Huw Jones’ pass – comfortably inside his own half – and then raced away from every white shirt on the field.

Ben Earl trailed in his wake, and Henry Slade dived through thin air to bite Van der Merwe’s dust, as the Scotland star stunned every single person in attendance. Here was a moment to remember, whatever anyone’s allegiance.

But for those of an England hue, the tie took another nosedive when Cameron Redpath cut clear and Finn Russell’s pinpoint wide chip sent Van der Merwe home to wrap up that treble.

England hit back through Immanuel Feyi-Waboso’s neat score, to add to George Furbank’s early effort, but the damage was already done.

Van der Merwe’s three scores took him clear second on Scotland’s all-time try list at 26, just one behind Stuart Hogg.

And Scotland claimed their fourth straight win over England for the first time since 1972. Not in 52 years have England sunk so low against the auld enemy.

While Scotland must be acclaimed for their excellence, England are left to look inward for answers that continue to elude them.

England need to win three matches in this tournament to progress from their recent Six Nations also-ran status. And with Ireland and France to come, the chances now appear slim at best.

England can argue in some senses they are making progress in Steve Borthwick’s rebuild, but results do not back that up and that will be the biggest frustration.

England marched into Murrayfield at the top of the day, led by a brass band. Right from kick-off the visitors stamped an authoritative beat to steal an early advantage.

Finally England produced rhythm and tempo to match the timing of that pre-match horn section accompaniment.

Furbank ghosted home for a try of precision and savvy, sent over the whitewash by Elliot Daly, who had cut the line in style.

England profited from Earl’s smart No8 break, and cut all the right angles behind the scrum.

George Ford’s conversion and penalty had England 10-0 to the good only 15 minutes in.

But then a creeping error count took its toll, with England messy in possession and littering the field with knock-ons.

If the first quarter of an hour belonged to England, the second was all Scotland’s. Ever the Red Rose scourge, Van der Merwe struck again, and twice in 10 minutes in fact.

First Sione Tuipulotu sent Jones racing clear, before the alert outside centre popped off the ground smartly to keep the move alive.

Van der Merwe latched onto that pass, scythed wide and romped in, even selling Ford an outrageous dummy on the line.

For his second score of the day, Van der Merwe then conjured a moment every inch as magical as his stunning try at Twickenham last year.

From fully 60 metres out, the powerhouse stomped down the Murrayfield turf, leaving everyone for dead. Russell’s penalty with five minutes to play kept Scotland’s momentum alive.

Ford had the presence of mind to drop a goal out of nothing just a minute later though, to keep England in the argument at 17-13 at half-time.

After the restart, Scotland struck again though, with Van der Merwe carving his name into the record books once again.

Redpath had hardly replaced the injured Tuipulotu when he bisected England’s doglegged midfield, and set the Scots en route to another score.

Russell then pinged a delightful cross-field chip into Van der Merwe’s path, and the big winger had his treble.

England mounted a desperate attack seeking a riposte to stay in the clash, but Russell slotted two quick penalties to push Scotland into a 30-16 lead.

Feyi-Waboso scored a poacher’s try with his first touch though, to drag England almost back into the reckoning.

Fin Smith’s conversion attempt hit the post, leaving Scotland leading 30-21 heading into the final 10 minutes.