Wednesday 22 November 2017

Scots put faith in Robinson

While Andy Robinson was backing his team yesterday by announcing an unchanged line-up to play Wales, the Scottish Rugby Union showed its appreciation of his efforts in the past 18 months by confirming him as coach through to the 2015 World Cup in England.

Such a massive vote of confidence for Robinson, English to the core, but an immediate hit north of the border, where his passion for the game has struck a chord, is indicative of the feel-good factor running through Scottish rugby after some lean years.

The graph has not been ever upwards since Robinson took over, but nobody can argue with away wins against Ireland and Argentina and home victories over Australia and South Africa. There was also evidence in Paris last Saturday, despite losing to France, of a new athleticism and creativity which sits well with Scotland fans.

"I am very happy with the progress that has been made by Scottish rugby in recent seasons," said Robinson.

Deciding to go again with the team who lost 34-21 to France was not the hardest of decisions for Robinson once the fitness of Rory Lawson, Max Evans and Nikki Walker had been established, but it did represent a considerable vote of confidence in his front-row.

Scotland's scrum got a mauling against France, particularly Euan Murray, but this area had been earning plaudits and the party line is that it was a collective failure by the pack, not just the front-row.

SCOTLAND (v Wales) -- H Southwell; N Walker, J Ansbro, N De Luca, M Evans; D Parks, R Lawson; A Jacobsen, R Ford, E Murray, R Gray, A Kellock (capt), N Hines, K Brown, J Barclay. Reps: S Lawson, M Low, R Vernon, R Rennie, M Blair, R Jackson, S Lamont.

Irish Independent

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