SCOTLAND prop Mairi Forsyth is convinced the squad have learned the lessons of last year’s dismal defeat by England and can compete far more effectively when the teams meet again at Scotstoun this afternoon.

An 80-0 loss at Twickenham completed a whitewash for the Scots in the Six Nations, and spelled the end to Shade Munro’s reign as head coach. The team have played half a dozen Tests since then, winning three, and Forsyth is sure improvements have been made, both mentally and physically.

“Last year we came out to warm up right as the men’s game was finishing,” she recalled. “Twickenham was absolutely packed and the men’s game had been very exciting, and I think that atmosphere shocked a lot of us. I think we maybe slightly came in on ourselves instead of absorbing that and using it to help us.

“So for me the biggest learning was that we need to not go back into our shells. We really need to go out and go at England. We just need to stick together and play our game, not let them come at us and play their rugby.

“I think we’re in a really good place just now physically, and I think we’ve come on so much since we played England last year – as individual players and as a group.”

Forsyth will win her 14th cap today less than a year-and-a- half after her first. Her sister Jemma is also a full international, but the two have never played together at senior level.

“When I was at school I went to Grangemouth Rugby Club and a week later my sister joined me,” 28-year-old Mairi said. “We played together a lot at club level

and academy, and we’ve got A caps together, then I got to a point in my life where I wasn’t committed to rugby as much. Then Jemma got an op on her shoulder and was not in the squad when I came in. It was a shame we never got to play together.”