Six Nations: Ross Ford focused solely on Scotland

Scotland captain Ross Ford
Ford will lead Scotland out for the first time at Murrayfield on Saturday

RBS Six Nations: Scotland v England

Venue:
Murrayfield
Date:
Saturday, 4 February
Kick-off:
1700 GMT
Coverage:
Live on BBC TV, HD, Red Button, BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Radio 5 live and online

Scotland captain Ross Ford will pay little heed to England's line-up for the Six Nations opener on Saturday.

The visitors have named an inexperienced squad and will be led by Chris Robshaw, who has one cap.

"This week has been mainly about us, we can only control what we do on the pitch," said Ford, who will be playing in his 54th international.

"Whatever England bring, we'll just have to deal with it and combat that the way that works best for us."

The Edinburgh hooker will skipper Scotland for the first time and cannot wait to get started at Murrayfield.

"I'll be looking to go out and do my job and lead by example," he told BBC Scotland. "That means getting the ball in my hands and having a good bash at it."

Scotland will be out to avenge November's narrow 16-12 defeat at the World Cup.

Andy Robinson's side have found tries hard to come by and much is expected of wingers Max Evans and Lee Jones, who will be making his debut.

"If we put enough pressure on them and work our systems well enough, we'll get the ball back," added Ford.

"When Max and Jonesy get the ball they are electric, so it's important to find a way of getting them into space and into mismatch situations, where they can do what they do best.

"That's getting the ball in their hands and having a crack."

Stand-off Dan Parks also stressed the importance of stretching play and utilising the speed of Evans and Jones.

"We've got good pace out on the wings, good footwork as well, so we need to get the ball out to those guys as often as possible," said the Cardiff Blues back.

"We've also got hard runners through the middle like Sean Lamont, who will get us that go forward.

"In the pack, we have David Denton raring to go. At Cardiff, when we look at how Edinburgh play, he is certainly someone who has really caught the eye. A lot of the blokes down there have been really impressed.

"He brings a real physical presence to the team and his surges have been electrifying this season.

"The young guys bring a bit of energy and that's what Scotland needs to get us over the line."

Reflecting on a World Cup campaign that saw Scotland fail to reach the quarter-finals for the first time, Parks was still smarting at the loss to England in Auckland.

"It was a great occasion to be out there for the World Cup but we came back very disappointed with how things ended up," he explained.

"We had two really narrow losses [Argentina and England], which cost us dearly.

"We were in a real winning position against England and we just didn't close it off.

"It's going to be a huge test against England but we're looking forward to it. It's really important to start well.

"In previous years we've struggled to get off the mark. If you look back to 2006, when we had our best championship for some years, we had France first up and we put in a really good performance to get the win."

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