A win by eight points or more at Eden Park would see Scotland progress to the quarter-finals and - if Argentina claim a bonus-point win over Georgia on Sunday - send 2003 World Cup winners England out of the tournament.
Giant lock Richie Gray shrugged and insisted Scotland were focusing on themselves, scrum-half Chris Cusiter, captain 18 months ago, did likewise.
Centre Nick De Luca at first played down the rivalry, attempting to side-step the issue, before delivering the line the assembled New Zealand media wanted to hear.
De Luca said: "No matter who we were playing this weekend... it could be - it hopefully won't be - our last game in the World Cup.
"(The opposition) definitely doesn't matter in that sense.
"If we do it right England would go out, which would be an added bonus, but it's not the incentive itself.
"What we're doing is trying to go out there and get through ourselves."
De Luca's chosen word - "bonus" - is the key. Scotland must deny England a bonus point or score four tries themselves, thus earning an extra point, to advance.
De Luca is optimistic Scotland can double their try tally so far in the tournament.
He added: "I think it's very feasible. England do have a great defence and we aren't prolific try-scorers so it's going to be a big ask but we're definitely confident we can do it."
One reason for Scotland's poor try record is due to two of their matches - the win over Georgia and loss to Argentina - being played in torrential rain, while England's three fixtures in the tournament to date were played at Otago Stadium in Dunedin, underneath a roof.
De Luca had no complaints about the venues, but he is hoping the rain will relent and allow Scotland to run with the ball.
He said: "We play an outdoor sport - England haven't yet.
"The rugby gods haven't been kind weather-wise. It would be great if we had a dry night and we could hopefully show the world our more creative side and our strike force."
De Luca began the matches against Georgia and the Pumas, but could be replaced in the starting XV for Saturday's match, with Joe Ansbro and Sean Lamont options to join Graeme Morrison at centre.
The team will be announced at 0900 local time on Thursday (2100BST on Wednesday).
Whoever lines up in the Scotland midfield will likely come up against England's Samoa-born centre Manu Tuilagi.
De Luca added: "He's running some good lines, he's a big lad, but I've played against plenty of big lads before, so I'm not too worried.
"I enjoy that side of the game - and if I'm lucky enough to be up against him I'll do my jobs.
"He's a great talent and a great player and if you allow him the space he'll break tackles, so it's up to us as a unit and as individuals to make sure we put him under pressure and make good, accurate, technical tackles."
De Luca hopes Tuilagi and his team-mates spend less time with the ball in their hands and more time defending.
He added: "Defensively England were under a lot of pressure against Argentina and came up with a win.
"We're hoping to put them under similar pressure but hopefully more effectively in getting some tries."
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