Courtney Lawes insists England must prevent Finn Russell from leaving his imprint on Saturday’s Calcutta Cup showdown if Scotland are to be toppled at Murrayfield.
Russell has retained his place in Gregor Townsend’s starting XV despite an inauspicious start to this year’s Six Nations, struggling against Wales and eventually being replaced by Greig Laidlaw at fly-half for the victory over France.
The Racing 92-bound playmaker is deadly when on song, leaving Lawes to call for him to be shackled by Eddie Jones’ tournament favourites right from the start.
“Finn is a confidence player so if you let him get confidence early then he’s probably going to have a good game,” Northampton forward Lawes said.
“Obviously most or 99 percent of the games you play in you are going to target the nine and 10 just because they run the game for the opposition.
“Are we going to target him any more than any other 10? No, but we are going to target him. He is very good player, a quality player and we don’t want him to have a sniff at all.”