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17 October 2014

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Grand Slam 1990

David Sole


Having made their supporters endure a 59 year gap between their first and second Grand Slams, Scotland ensured that it would be a much shorter gap before the streets of Edinburgh were again reverberating to the strains of “Flower of Scotland”, following the 1984 triumph by sweeping all before them in 1990.

There was little sign of the excitement ahead during a gritty 13-10 win over Ireland in Dublin in the first match of the campaign.

Scotland trailed 7-0 at half-time and then 10-6 midway through the second half, before No.8 Derek White emerged as the unlikely hero. White scored both tries, the first converted by Craig Chalmers, who also kicked a penalty as Scotland scraped a narrow win.

Defending champions France were next, but their miserable Murrayfield record continued as they were thrashed 21-0.

Scotland only led by a Gavin Hastings penalty to nil at the interval, but when the French were reduced to fourteen men following the dismissal of flanker Carminati they gave themselves an almost impossible task, and the Scots took advantage.

Finlay Calder


A Chalmers penalty was followed by a Finlay Calder try (thereby emulating his twin brother Jim in scoring a try against France in a Grand Slam season) and a Chalmers conversion. A second try, this time by Iwan Tukalo, was again converted by Chalmers who completed the rout with a penalty as the Scots ran out winners by 21-0.

Scotland's third game, against Wales in Cardiff, was similar to their first. Solid, determined and unspectacular, with only one try apiece in a very tight game as Scotland took the spoils by thirteen points to nine. Damien Cronin's try allied to three penalties from Craig Chalmers made up Scotland's tally.

And so to Murrayfield…

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