Jim Hamilton has warned England they are in for a rude awakening if they fail to give his Scotland side the respect they deserve at Twickenham.
Lock Hamilton, who was born in Swindon and spent almost a decade at Leicester before joining Edinburgh last year, is well placed to judge the merits of both camps ahead of their Calcutta Cup clash.
England appear to have found their form in this season’s RBS 6 Nations after thrashing France last weekend, while Scotland are still battling to avoid the wooden spoon.
But Hamilton insists English sides have been stung enough times by their Scottish counterparts in recent years for the latter to have earned their respect.
“There needs to be respect from England,” said Hamilton, who qualifies for Scotland through his father.
“They’ve come up here and lost on the last two occasions; Leicester came up here and were knocked out of Europe by Edinburgh last year.
“To be fair, I think there is respect. Whenever I go back to England, the guys are always complimentary of the teams we have up here.”
Following another RBS 6 Nations of struggle, which has yielded a solitary win against Italy, Scotland must win tomorrow’s game if they are to safeguard head coach Frank Hadden’s future.
Hamilton believes they owe a victory as much to their long-suffering fans as to the management team.
“Supporters are going to be frustrated; they’re paying good money,” said the 31-year-old.
“But everyone’s frustrated – no-one more so than the players. The feeling when you lose, you can’t explain unless you’ve played the game and been in the situation.
“So we understand people are frustrated and looking for answers but we’re giving 100% and we’re going to go out there on Saturday and give it everything we’ve got to can the errors and build towards the win that I think everyone knows we’re capable of.
“As players, we’re not stupid. When you lose a game at home in front of 70,000 people, you can hear the disappointment and feel it.
“We’re not hiding away from that, but we’re the only guys who can put us in the position to get that win. We don’t want to lose and are trying everything we can to get the win.”
“We want everyone to get right behind us for this game. We’re going down there, we hold the cup, and we want to defend it in a way we feel we’re worthy of and in a manner we think our hard work deserves.”
Hamilton echoed the sentiments of team-mate Simon Danielli who believes England’s sudden transformation – far from being a cause for concern – actually gives Scotland hope they can pull off the same trick end end 26 years of pain at Twickenham tomorrow.
“It shows that it can happen,” Hamilton said.
“Every team has got guys that can produce that little bit of magic to change a game and we’re no different. Look at Thom Evans – every time he gets on the ball everyone picks up.
“Our time has to come and it has to come quick. This is our last opportunity to show what we can do for a while.
“We are massively disappointed with the way this Six Nations has gone. We had a lot of expectation on us after the way we performed in the autumn Tests and, for whatever reason, it hasn’t happened.”