A Scotland win in the Calcutta Cup on Saturday would end a 40-year wait for four consecutive wins over the Auld Enemy. 

The last time Scotland won four on the bounce against England, they were winners in the 1970, 71 and 72 Five Nations, the latter two interspersed with a win in a match that marked the 100th anniversary of the inaugural rugby international, played between the two sides.

But if they triumph on Saturday, it  would be the first time Scotland have registered four consecutive championship wins over the Auld Enemy since 1896. 

England have had long periods of dominance in the fixture. The 2000 win saw Scotland reclaim the trophy for the first time since David Sole’s team clinched the Grand Slam a decade prior.

It's easy to forget that the 2018 success at Murrayfield was Scotland’s first in the fixture for a decade too.

Since defeat a rain-soaked Murrayfield just before Covid hit in 2020, Gregor Townsend’s team have recorded back-to-back triumphs at the home of English rugby, the first ending a 36-year wait for a Twickenham.

READ MORE: Scotland vs England: Keeping winning run going and dealing with Springbok influence

But the most memorable of the recent meetings between the two sides is the 2019 edition, which will be remembered as an all-time Calcutta Cup classic.

England scored twice inside the opening 10 minutes, and four times inside the opening half-hour as they cruised into a 31-0 advantage.

Scotland, seemingly without an answer to the English onslaught, scored what at the time appeared a consolation score through captain Stuart McInally.

The Edinburgh hooker charged down an Owen Farrell kick before running 60 metres to touch down. Nobody could have predicted the turnaround that would ensue.

McInally, who retired last year, reflected on a whirlwind afternoon.

He said: “I remember we were behind the posts [after an England try] and I was getting everyone in and just addressing the issue of why we conceded the try.

“There’s no point me shouting at people. There’s very few times I’ve found where you have to give a bollocking under the posts. It was just about keeping the boys calm.

“We hadn’t had a good tournament [one win vs Italy] and there was a part of that game that felt awful. The Scotland fans were leaving.”

Whether he or a team-mate, McInally knew someone in a Scotland jersey had to impose themselves on the game.

He said: “We’d talked about getting at Farrell and I just got to him and charged down his kick.

“I got a kind bounce, and I knew I just needed to run for as long as I could before I got tackled.

“I don’t know why I swerved when I did, why Jonny May dived the way he did. It all just worked fine. As soon as I managed to get past Jonny, I knew I would make it.”

Even at 31-7 it was a long way back, and Scotland knew it. On their last visit to south west London, they were 30-7 down at the break and were thumped 61-21, a defeat that equalled their worst result against England.

Much has been made since of a chaotic half-time clash of styles involving Townsend and Finn Russell, but McInally paints a different picture.

"It wasn’t chaotic,” he said.

“Anything that happened between Gregor and Finn, I wasn’t aware of.

“I remember Finn was getting some treatment, which isn’t unusual at half-time. Gregor spoke about us trying to win the second half. It was a bit of a blur – I was still knackered after my run."

The second half saw Scotland transformed as Darcy Graham scored twice either side of a try from Magnus Bradbury. When Russell scampered clear after intercepting a Farrell pass, Scotland were level. When the mercurial fly-half put Sam Johnson away, the visitors had the lead.

George Ford’s try at the death salvaged a draw for Eddie Jones’ side, but as holders, Scotland retained the famous trophy.

McInally became the first Scot since Jim Aitken in 1983 to lift the Calcutta Cup at Twickenham. It should have been a moment filled with joy.

“I was almost a bit embarrassed,” admits the former Edinburgh man, who is now training to be a pilot.

“I regret that. I wish I’d milked it more because I was the first captain to lift in there in a long time.

“We hadn’t won it so I didn’t feel like I could really go for it. I remember photographers asking me to kiss the trophy but I wouldn’t do it. I was just relieved we hadn’t embarrassed ourselves.”