England (10) 25

Try: Joseph, Ford, Nowell

Pens: Ford 2

Conversions: Ford 2

Scotland (13) 13

Try: Bennett

Pens: Laidlaw 2

Conversions: Laidlaw

Chris Robshaw
Robshaw lifted the first of possibly two pieces of silverware.Getty Images

England reignited their Six Nations championship hopes after defeating a dogged Scotland to retain the Calcutta Cup at Twickenham.

Stuart Lancaster's side head into the final weekend in contention for their first title since 2011 after Wales defeated Ireland in Cardiff.

Scotland threatened to complete just their fifth victory over England in the two country's 104-year rivalry after Mark Bennett's try and two penalties from Greg Laidlaw put them ahead of half time but the home side staged a comeback in the second period.

After Jonathan Joseph's try after five minutes, George Ford and Jack Nowell's calm finishes secured a third win in four games to put England top of the table but needing a heavy win over France on 21 March to claim the title on the final weekend.

With all three teams level on three wins, England's points difference is four better off than Ireland and 25 ahead of Wales but the Celtic duo's games against Italy and Scotland will give them the chance to cut that advantage.

Having had their championship hopes reinvigorated by Wales's victory over Ireland, England were boosted by the return from concussion of Mike Brown and also Courtney Lawes after his New Year ankle surgery.

Scotland, winless at Twickenham since 1983, were meanwhile heading for the wooden spoon after three straight defeats despite their expansive game under Vern Cotter.

Alex Dunbar's anterior cruciate knee ligament injury less than 48 hours before the game added to the Scots' problems as they sought to reclaim the Calcutta Cup and beat England for the first time for seven years.

Following scrutiny over their start to matches, England made an impressive start and after Luthur Burrell failed to find Anthony Watson, Joseph quick-stepped his way to the opening try inside five minutes as Scotland were ominously cut apart.

With Scotland targeting the aerial weakness which Ireland exposed in Dublin two weeks ago and continually giving away possession, England's dominance continued but they failed to add to their lead after butchering several chances.

Brown and Nowell scampered through but were denied by Stuart Hogg and that lackluster cutting edge was punished in Scotland's first attack as Bennett claimed his second international try in as many games following a flowing move.

George Ford
Ford scored England's second try to inspire them to victory.Getty Images

Ford reestablished the lead with a penalty but Scotland continued to threaten through their back three of Bennett, Dougie Fife and Hogg, and Laidlaw kicked them level after half an hour.

And the visitors went into the break in front as Laidlaw kicked a second penalty after Brown brilliantly stopped Tommy Seymour as Scotland sensed an opportunity to stage the shock of the championship.

The second period began in similar fashion to the first but early England pressure was rewarded with a try as Ford waltzed through following a multi-phase move.

A second Ford penalty after Lawes was tackled in the air extended the home side's lead as Scotland began to unravel, with their kicking out of hand allowing England's pressure to intensify.

Brown thought he had put the game beyond Scotland but James Haskell's offload was adjudged to be forward as Scotland clung onto hopes of completing a famous win.

Those hopes were extinguished in the final minutes however as England claimed a third try as Nowell went over in the corner to secure a win which sets up a grand stand finale to the championship on the final weekend.

Teams

England: 15. Mike Brown, 14. Anthony Watson, 13. Jonathan Joseph, 12. Luthur Burrell, 11. Jack Nowell, 10. George Ford, 9. Ben Youngs; 1. Joe Marler, 2. Dylan Hartley, 3. Dan Cole, 4. Dave Attwood, 5. Courtney Lawes, 6. James Haskell, 7. Chris Robshaw, 8. Billy Vunipola

Replacements: 16. Tom Youngs, 17. Make Vunipola, 18. Kieran Brookes, 19. Geoff Parling, 20. Tom Wood, 21. Richard Wigglesworth, 22. Danny Cipriani, 23. Billy Twelvestrees.

Scotland: 15. Stuart Hogg, 14. Dougie Fife, 13. Mark Bennett, 12. Matt Scott, 11. Tommy Seymour, 10. Finn Russell, 9. Greig Laidlaw; 1. Alasdair Dickinson 2. Ross Ford 3. Euan Murray 4. Jim Hamilton, 5.Jonny Gray, 6. Robert Harley, 7. Blair Cowan 8. David Denton

Replacements: 16. Fraser Brown, 17. Ryan Grant, 18. Geoff Cross, 19. Tim Swinson , 20. Johnnie Beattie, 21. Adam Ashe, 22. Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 23. Greig Tonks.