Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

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Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by BigGee on Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:23 am

First topic message reminder :

Scotland v South Africa
BT Murrayfield Stadium
Edinburgh

Saturday 17th November
KO 17.00


Well another interesting game coming up between two old rivals.

Scotland found their form with a vengeance this Saturday, putting a much fancied Fiji side to the sword very emphatically. They are a team who have very good home form now and they will see this as their biggest test of the autumn.

South Africa are also on the up and playing much better under Erasmus, with a noticeable scalp of the All Blacks this season and beating England in a series over the summer. Recent form is a bit mixed, they lost a game they should have won against England and won a game they should have lost against France, so hard to know just what to read into that. It has been a long hard season for them and it is not going to be easy stringing together 4 hard tests in 4 weekends.

Scotland will have the advantage of having been able to rest and rotate a few of their players. The question remains though will Toonie go all out with his strongest team for this one (does he even know what his strongest team is?) or will he continue with some gentle tinkering, as is his want and maybe even introduce a few new players into the mix. Will we see Gary Graham capped for instance in his first appearance in a Scotland squad after a road to Damascus moment sometime over breakfast (humble pie on the menu) this weekend.

My stab at the Scotland team before we get a few clues with media interviews during the week:

Nel
McInally
Dell
Gray
Skinner
Wilson
Strauss
Watson
Laidlaw
Russell
Seymour
Dunbar
Jones H
Maitland
Hogg

Allen
Brown
Berghan
Gilchrist
Graham
Horne G
Hastings
Kinghorn



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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by BigGee on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:10 pm

Well done Boks, to strong for us and ruled the breakdown.

Poor calls from Scotland when the chips were down, we had our chances.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Pie on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:12 pm

Sorry for Scotland but dont look too far to see the problem is Russell playing without using his head

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by RDW_Scotland on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:14 pm

Biltong wrote:Excellent game by Scotland, they certainly look a different team to five years ago when they couldn't buy a try on the black market.
Strange you say that given how many chances we didn't convert!

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Biltong on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:16 pm

RDW_Scotland wrote:
Biltong wrote:Excellent game by Scotland, they certainly look a different team to five years ago when they couldn't buy a try on the black market.
Strange you say that given how many chances we didn't convert!

The two tries you scored were brilliant, both teams fluffed chances. Boks dropped three penalties in attacking rucks by going off their feet.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Taylorman on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:26 pm

Well done Biltong, commis Scotland. Kinda throught it would go that way

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Exiledinborders on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:26 pm

Pie wrote:Sorry for Scotland but dont look too far to see the problem is Russell playing without using his head
He is great to watch but at any point it a toss up whether he throws a brilliant pass that other fly halves could only dream of or totally f***s up. Sadly it is always better to have a player who throws the safe pass 95% of the time.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Pie on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:32 pm

Exiledinborders wrote:
Pie wrote:Sorry for Scotland but dont look too far to see the problem is Russell playing without using his head
He is great to watch but at any point it a toss up whether he throws a brilliant pass that other fly halves could only dream of or totally f***s up.  Sadly it is always better to have a player who throws the safe pass 95% of the time.

Sotland have made probably more progress than any other side in the world in the last few seasons to be true contenders; shame to see a guy trying to play champagne rugby instead of being strategic. Question is can Hastings step up

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:33 pm

Exiledinborders wrote:
Pie wrote:Sorry for Scotland but dont look too far to see the problem is Russell playing without using his head
He is great to watch but at any point it a toss up whether he throws a brilliant pass that other fly halves could only dream of or totally f***s up.  Sadly it is always better to have a player who throws the safe pass 95% of the time.

He doesn’t think about his teammates. He’s on his 5m line and launches a huge pass out to the wing. Yes he CAN throw the pass but he shouldn’t throw the pass. Jones was clearly covered by the SA wing and Russell just put him in a bad position.

The ball should have been booted 50m down field by Hogg.

Utterly frustrating player to watch.

You know what he needs? He needs to be coached by dan parks.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Biltong on Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:33 pm

Taylorman wrote:Well done Biltong, commis Scotland. Kinda throught it would go that way

Thanks Tman, that match could easily have gone the other way.

Our wingers insist in charging in on defence, it is becoming predictable now
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:20 pm

Biltong wrote:Poite should have officiated England vs SA, that cleanout had at least on arm wrapped.

Farrell had none

Would have been good to see the red card for Snyman and an easier win for England I agree.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by BigGee on Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:25 pm

Kolisi is a lucky boy no one saw the head butt.

I expect he will be up before the beak for that one.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Biltong on Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:33 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
Biltong wrote:Poite should have officiated England vs SA, that cleanout had at least on arm wrapped.

Farrell had none

Would have been good to see the red card for Snyman and an easier win for England I agree.

Never happened, no citing, no complaint from any player, wishful thinking.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:35 pm

Yeah right biltong. So we'll discount your whinge too.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by lostinwales on Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:34 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Yeah right biltong. So we'll discount your whinge too.

We talking about the shoulder to the head or the hand in Wilson's face?
Run 

On a serious note tough match. What with results from the last couple of weeks and of course Ireland's victory today it all goes to show that the NH/SH gap has all but disappeared.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by 123456789. on Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:51 pm

Yeah it's bizarre to see Scotland 6 points off the Boks having played so poorly, the game management simply was not there today unfortunately. I'm not sure I've seen an international team maul so poorly as we have against Wales and South Africa. It is simply unforgivable to have the ball at the back and still concede a turnover.

I'd agree with the above but I don't think the gap has disappeared I think there's just different teams there. I think we now see Ireland and New Zealand at the top, then a gap and then Wales, England, South Africa, Australia, Scotland, Argentina (in no particular order) and then Italy, Georgia, Fiji, Japan, USA (again, no particular order).

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by TJ on Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:57 pm

So - can we say goodbye to Ryan Wilson now?

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by RDW_Scotland on Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:58 pm

TJ wrote:So - can we say goodbye to Ryan Wilson now?
He was a complete passenger, just when we needed one of our most experienced forwards to stand up and be counted

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by whocares on Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:58 pm

123456789. wrote:
I'd agree with the above but I don't think the gap has disappeared I think there's just different teams there. I think we now see Ireland and New Zealand at the top, then a gap and then Wales, England, South Africa, Australia, Scotland, Argentina (in no particular order) and then Italy, Georgia, Fiji, Japan, USA (again, no particular order).

I know France hasn’t been exactly worldbeaters recently but tier 3 nation ? Whistle Very Happy

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:21 pm

RDW_Scotland wrote:
TJ wrote:So - can we say goodbye to Ryan Wilson now?
He was a complete passenger, just when we needed one of our most experienced forwards to stand up and be counted

I never see him doing anything. I’m not going to blame him for pollard’s try as he was beaten on the outside for pace. The first try though we was jogging very slowly back into position and was completely exposed.

The team as a whole played poorly with the exception of Jones and Hogg. Most of the team were standard at best, but Wilson and Russell were utterly dire.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by 123456789. on Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:33 pm

whocares wrote:
123456789. wrote:
I'd agree with the above but I don't think the gap has disappeared I think there's just different teams there. I think we now see Ireland and New Zealand at the top, then a gap and then Wales, England, South Africa, Australia, Scotland, Argentina (in no particular order) and then Italy, Georgia, Fiji, Japan, USA (again, no particular order).

I know France hasn’t been exactly worldbeaters recently but tier 3 nation ? Whistle Very Happy

yeah sorry France are in the second group

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by mikey_dragon on Sun Nov 18, 2018 12:42 am

123456789. wrote:Yeah it's bizarre to see Scotland 6 points off the Boks having played so poorly, the game management simply was not there today unfortunately. I'm not sure I've seen an international team maul so poorly as we have against Wales and South Africa. It is simply unforgivable to have the ball at the back and still concede a turnover.

I'd agree with the above but I don't think the gap has disappeared I think there's just different teams there. I think we now see Ireland and New Zealand at the top, then a gap and then Wales, England, South Africa, Australia, Scotland, Argentina (in no particular order) and then Italy, Georgia, Fiji, Japan, USA (again, no particular order).

Eh? The order right now is Wales are on top of those. Out of the list in bold only Eng and SA can challenge Wales for 3rd place in world rugby. If Scotland are as good as you think they’d have more wins over Wales, England and SA - but they don’t.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 1:28 am

Bored. Tele is rotten. So prayer ratings.

Reid - 6: didn't do much good but didn't do much wrong. International  rugby was just too big a step up from 2nd division rugby
McInally - 6: wasn't his best game but solid enough
Nel - 5: wasn't effective in the scrum. His opposite had the better of him most of the game
Toolis - 6: again, another who just didn't click into gear
Gray - 5: we expect much more from him. Ended up as captain. Didn't exactly fire up
Skinner - 6: didn't back up last weeks efforts. Still developing though.
Watson - 6.5: probably the best forward but couldn't stop the bok dominating the breakdown
Wilson - 3: donkey. Jogged about. Was caught out for both SA tries. If not dropped next week, clearly has pictures of toonie

Frodo - 5: slow. That's all I can say
Russell - 4.5: either get the basics right or bugger off. This hot and cold nonsense is wearing thin. Stop kicking away possession. Stop throwing wild passes to teammates that put them in bother

Horne - 5: sure he was on hand to finish jones' try, but other than that. Another inconsistent player who struggles against teams in the top 10
Jones - 8: poor laddie must wake up in the middle of the night screaming. Other than hogg, he's the only player that plays consistently well for us. Half a step further than the rest
Seymour - 6: did hee haw
Mainland - 5: surely under pressure to lose his spot. If Kinghorn isn't 15 next week, then he needs to be 11.
Hogg - 7.5: kicking kept us in it. Some dazzling footwork. Must hope jones is near by when he breaks as no one else is.

Subs - 5: no one made an impact. Ali price, awful attempted break that ended up in touch. Wee Horne next week please. Strauss was poor also.

Coach - 4: need to work on restarts. Need to work on breakdown (both Wales and SA bossed is here). Should have hooked Russell after 50 mins. Should have had Kinghorn benching. Needs to tell players that running from deep should only be done when it's on and aimless kicks are going to incur £5k fines each time.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Pie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:19 am

RDW_Scotland wrote:
TJ wrote:So - can we say goodbye to Ryan Wilson now?
He was a complete passenger, just when we needed one of our most experienced forwards to stand up and be counted

if Wilson was playing at 6 then he needs to go, noticed on several occasions just how off the pace he was

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Pie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:25 am

Rankings wise there is NZ/Ireland then a large gap with Wales/SA then a very small gap with Eng/Aus/Arg and Scots. oh and France, somewhere, who cares.


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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by 123456789. on Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:47 am

I am starting to think Townsend and Russell suffer from Maverick Syndrome to an extent, the idea that every game, every selection, every touch they have to do something special, something unpredictable. It works a lot of the time, even most of the time. But the higher the stakes and the better the team the ratio of good to bad worsens. Today Russell, tried to be too special all game. How many times did we kick it? How many times was an offload thrown that just was not on?
Russell is reaching an age where he has to add a bit of maturity to his game. Everyone speaks of how Townsend was special and he was but lets not pretend there wasn't always a sense of unfulfilled talent with him. Russell could be in danger of going the same way. When Russell is at his best he reaches a level above what Jonny Sexton can, however 9/10 Sexton reaches that level slightly below Russell's best whereas 1/10 Russell reaches it. We need that consistency. Either that or Peter Horne needs to grow into the Farrell role, but he seems to encourage the chaos not temper it. At points chaos is good, last year England were entirely bewildered. But today for vast amounts of the time we had the third best team in the world under the screw, and when we needed accuracy we provided unpredictability.
It's not all doom and gloom, 5-10 years ago a 6 point defeat to the Springboks off the back of the poorest home performance in 2 seasons would be unthinkable. There are a few players though who have to be on last chance saloon, Wilson is running out of opportunities, Harris has had a few and as of yet has offered little in any of them.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Biltong on Sun Nov 18, 2018 3:01 am

If anyone think that was a poor Scottish performance they are lying ti themselves.

The only part Scotland struggled was the breakdown, but SA negated much of that advantage by cobceding countless penalties for going of their feet.

In all other aspects Scotland did very well.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Eejit on Sun Nov 18, 2018 7:50 am

Biltong wrote:If anyone think that was a poor Scottish performance they are lying ti themselves.

The only part Scotland struggled was the breakdown, but SA negated much of that advantage by cobceding countless penalties for going of their feet.

In all other aspects Scotland did very well.

Sorry Biltong but I massively disagree. Our backrow especially Wilson looked completely undercooked and we were carrying so soft. Glacial Greg was more glacial and predictable than usual and it’s best I don’t mention Russell as he was a complete liability. He better watch his arse for the World Cup as Hastings might have his jersey off him by then at this rate.

There are games in the international Calendar when we can say that we are probably up against it but the Boks at Murrayfield is a game we should be winning every time these days.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by TJ on Sun Nov 18, 2018 7:59 am

The Boks have consistently been a level above scotland.  to say we should be beating them at home is simply hubris.    We almost matched them and had chances to win.  thats where our level has been for a year or two.  Yes we could have done better but beating the oks even at home would be a great result not a gimmie.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Biltong on Sun Nov 18, 2018 8:06 am

Eejit wrote:

There are games in the international Calendar when we can say that we are probably up against it but the Boks at Murrayfield is a game we should be winning every time these days.

Good luck with that.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Eejit on Sun Nov 18, 2018 8:12 am

Looking back the last part came off way more crass than I intended it to.  The point I was trying to make is that we are more infuriatingly inconsistent than usual at the moment and a year out from the World Cup (a competition where we are in the same group as the team that just beat the best side on the planet) we should be knocking off tier 1 sides at home (or at the very least show basic understanding of how to close out a game of test rugby). We are still happy knocking the dust off tier 2 sides like the flat track bullies that we are with Toony’s sexyrugby, but place us against credible opposition and we completely crumble.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by TJ on Sun Nov 18, 2018 9:12 am

We didn't crumble!  We kept on fighting but were not good enough

As an aside - I think that Townsend ha used these games to try out combinations and to prepare for the WC - rather than just trying to win every game with our best possible side he has blooded players and tried out things.  I think this will place us in a good place for the WC.  Our pool of players is wider and we gain more knowledge about the various combinations we have available and I think that is a good thing.  A bit of short term pain for long term gain.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by RDW_Scotland on Sun Nov 18, 2018 9:33 am

TJ's hit the nail on the head here - if this was a must win game Toonie wouldn't have picked that team and I'm sure the tactics would have e been different. Same for the Wales and Fiji games - plenty experimentation on the go.

I'm in two minds about that though - on one hand we need to try these players out, but then how are we going to work out how to beat SA in a world cup if we've never done it in the cycle leading up to it? Look how much confidence Ireland will gain from beating NZ - that's far more beneficial to them than blooding fringe players.

IMO Toonie has got his selections wrong - his entire focus should have been on this SA game, picking his best team and going all out to get the win at all costs. He's mixed and matched every game and I just don't think we've got out of this series what we could have.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by RDW_Scotland on Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:08 am

Onto the game, I think we fell short in two areas - go forward and the breakdown. As feared our lightweight midfield and lack of carrying in the back row meant we struggled to get over the gainline. We really could have done with Dunbar or Matt Scott for this one - Scott in particular has been excellent this season running into heavy traffic and getting over the gainline.

The breakdown was a mess, with us struggling to shift the big South African lumps. Watson was fighting a losing battle on his own, the trade off you pay for picking a 2nd row at 6. We were guilty of ball watching at times too - we weren't committing enough men to the breakdown, with one penalty coming because Ali Price was the only player trying to clear out! No point standing out in the backs of we don't win the ball.

A lot has been said of the 'high risk' i.e. 'awful' play and there were a lot of bad decisions made. Finn's crosa field in our own 22 that went straight to their winger, the offloads that weren't on, the grubbers that weren't on, Price going blind late in the game etc etc. I get that we're an instinct team who are encouraged to try things, but youve still got to play the % plays when there's clearly nothing on. Finn will never be a truly world class 10 until he realises that - I can't see it happening any time soon though!

Final word on our mauls, which were really disappointing. The number 1 rule about mauls is to keep the ball at the back so if things stop moving you don't get turned over. We must have had 3 or 4 mauls in prominent positions where we failed to do that - must do better.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:17 am

Oh I'm all for trying out things in the AI and then we should look to build momentum in the 6ns but playing wilson isn't new. We know what he does or specifically, doesn't do.

We also know that Finn can blow hot and cold.

I'm not a professional coach and I knew that SA were going to be a massive step up on Fiji at the breakdown and defensively. Aside from magic by Hogg and Huw, we were utterly woeful in attack. Time and time again we got knocked back in the tackle. We were turned over at the breakdown, with only SA indiscipline keeping us in the game. Finn's kicking was aimless and costly.

My biggest criticism of toonie is his reluctance to go to the bench. Finn was awful, should have been hooked at halftime. Greig was slow, mind you, price isn't much better. Wilson should have been hooked at halftime.

Tactically we were poor also.

Big improvements required for next week
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Eejit on Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:25 am

Surely next week is last chance saloon for Wilson and Harris.

Naturally these games are about blooding new talent ahead of bigger fixtures ahead and he has certainly done that admirably over the past year or so. But it’s a results business at the end of the day and Other teams we consider equals are able to do their experimenting and win. Chalking it up to experience is the same logic that saw us as plucky losers for so long. As for the team itself It was hardly a scratch side and there are real concerns when we are questioning the supposed first choice halfbacks ability to manage a game.

The 9 jersey is a bit of a mystery. Price is still not anywhere near back to his best and if the Glacial one isn’t having his best game George Horne isn’t exactly the go to if you’re looking for game management (hope to see him vs the Argies next week though which should be fun). As for the others, Hooray Henry? SHC? That Kiwi bloke that people say is Scottish?


Last edited by Eejit on Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:31 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Biltong on Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:30 am

Hog was impressive yeah.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by lostinwales on Sun Nov 18, 2018 10:57 am

TJ wrote:The Boks have consistently been a level above scotland.  to say we should be beating them at home is simply hubris.    We almost matched them and had chances to win.  thats where our level has been for a year or two.  Yes we could have done better but beating the oks even at home would be a great result not a gimmie.

Historically yes. But history does not have to define what happens next.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by BigGee on Sun Nov 18, 2018 11:50 am

Is it not a sign of how far Scotland have come recently that we are a bit miffed and disappointed at a narrow loss to one of the world super powers of rugby. I don't think we are ever going to be expected to win these games but these days we are certainly in with a chance.

Once upon a time, we would have been very happy with that performance, but not now. Instead we need to look at what we can improve on to get us up to that level.

The big question is what we can do to improve our pack so we can get some go forward ball. Fundamentally we lost the game as we lost the collisions and just could not generate any momentum meaning the backs were taking it standing skill with the Bok defence all over them.

Finn did not have a good game, but he probably had to try things that were not on because he was under that pressure. If he had of sat back deeper and kicked it long every time, we still would not have won that game.

Don't be to hard on Skinner, it was only his second test and his first in the back row. That still may well be his best position for us.

Nel still does not seem to be he player he was a few years ago pre injury. I think Zander may well become our first choice TH once he gets back from injury. The LH shirt is still up for grabs as well, Reid I don't think is the answer, especially whilst playing in the second tier. We could really do with Ritchie Gray getting fit again as well, the two Gray brothers in tandem is still our best option in the row.

I imagine that he will roll the dice again for the Argentina game. A lot of the players that have played all three games so far will get a rest.

Maybe Gary Graham coming in for Wilson

I would like to see McCallam get a shot as well, Nel should probably stand down

Josh Strauss certainly deserves a start.

You wonder if any of the others are fit now and might be brought back into the squad, Thompson or Scott for instance, who would both surely have played some part. Lang played for Quins this weekend as well.

I don't mind him experimenting a bit, it may well be the last chance to do so.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by BigGee on Sun Nov 18, 2018 12:55 pm

Tom English pretty much agreeing with everything we have been saying!


Every team that ever amounted to anything in rugby went through a 'shoulda won phase', a stretch of time when they came away from big games lamenting narrow defeats that could have been seismic victories.

As they strive to become true contenders, Scotland are in that place right now. They know how to win and have done so with aplomb against stellar countries, but however many major days Gregor Townsend has had as a coach, he'll know that the total could have been a whole lot more.

South Africa on Saturday was one of those. Wales earlier in the month was another. Ireland in the Six Nations, though eventually a 20-point loss, might have been an altogether different story had Scotland not butchered so many chances and given up some soft points. Even New Zealand this time last year can fall into the category. Scotland had 60% possession and 65% territory that day.




It was, to borrow a phrase from Stuart McInally in the wake of the loss to the Springboks, "one that got away".

Is it harsh to criticise Scotland for not beating South Africa? Old school thinking would say yes, but that's the thought process of Scotland knowing its place and taking great pride in moral victories, the thought process of failure. If we criticise, we do it from a point of believing that they're capable of better.

Under Vern Cotter, Scotland moved on. Under Townsend, they have kept on moving. Now, you turn up to Murrayfield with a level of expectation, no matter who they're up against. They've worked hard to get to this stage. This is a dangerous rugby team we're taking about, albeit one that still has a lot of growing up to do.

Pete Horne's try against the Springboks was another classic in a growing list of classics. The speed of thought, the sleight of hand, the accuracy, the support lines - majestic.

Huw Jones was quite brilliant in that moment. Sean Maitland was exceptional also. Scotland can do that to any team on the planet and it's an utter joy to watch. Their journey these past few years has taken them from soft touches to live threats. The next part of the journey into the land of serial winners was always going to be the toughest, however.
◾️South Africa edge Scotland in thriller
◾️Scots 'will be better' for Springboks loss - Townsend

Did South Africa win this Test or did Scotland lose it? A bit of both, but possibly more of the latter than the former. They had chances. Oh, how they had chances.

Early in the second half they were gifted 10 minutes with a one-man advantage after Willie le Roux was harshly binned. Greig Laidlaw banged over the ensuing penalty to make it 20-20 but then Scotland failed to deal with the restart and coughed up a penalty of their own which Handre Pollard put over to restore the lead.

A fumbled restart, impetus for the Springboks, three points and a psychological boost for the visitors. These are little things, but add them all together and they're very big things.

That spell with Le Roux in the bin ended 3-3 and it would have been 6-3 to the Boks had Pollard not hit a post with a second penalty. An opportunity wasted for Scotland. Others followed. Jones made a terrific break out of defence in the 55th minute, but in the aftermath the ball was kicked away instead of being kept alive.

In the 59th minute, and trailing by three points, Scotland had a kickable penalty but they kicked for touch. It wasn't a bad decision as long as something came of it, but they lost the ball and the spirit of the Boks soared again.

South Africa were brutish, as we knew they would be. They battled ferociously, defended brilliantly, and won a resounding victory in the breakdown battle. They didn't play much, if any, rugby in that second half. They made the game an ugly arm wrestle.

Even then, Scotland had opportunities. Two minutes from time they had an attacking lineout in the Springbok 22 but it went wrong, They won a penalty directly after and went back to touch to launch another maul. That was their moment to pull off the victory but the maul went south, the Boks survived, and here we are again talking about what-might-have-beens.



Peter Horne scores an impressive try for Scotland against South Africa

Peter Horne scored an impressive try for Scotland against South Africa

Later in the evening, Ireland beat the All Blacks for the second time in two years. Even in the white heat of a top-of-the-world war of attrition, Ireland's error count was tiny. They played with a controlled fury for 80 minutes. This is not how Scotland play the game and trying to ape it would be doomed to failure. There is a message, though.

Scotland have won a lot of games with their brilliance. They've also won big games by digging deep and defending magnificently. To get the consistency to launch a championship-winning bid, however, they need more.

There is a requisite amount of power you need up front and though Scotland have many fine things in their armoury, they need extra badness in their pack to take the next step, the kind of qualities that Ireland had in Cian Healy, Tadhg Furlong, Peter O'Mahony and CJ Stander on Saturday night, the 'run-through-your-granny' belligerence that all winners have.

Five years ago the Irish team was in crisis having won just a single game in the Six Nations. The coach departed and Joe Schmidt arrived and in his first autumn he suffered the heartbreak of a late, late loss to the All Blacks in Dublin, a searing disappointment that haunted them. They grew up, found some new players and now look at them.

Scotland are on the right road, but it's a brutally tough trip to the top and the closer you get the harder it becomes. If the lessons are learned and then applied in the Six Nations and the World Cup, then defeat to South Africa might have been worth it.





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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by jimbopip on Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:49 pm

Afternoon chentlemen, the trip to Luvvietoon was interesting.

Before I get on to the rugby I must share a quite horrific occurrence. Before Bru gets his version in.

We stopped off at the Oxford bar in Thistle Street to chew the literary fat with Ian Rankin...he wasn't there Shocked
But that's not the horrific part. No, we got chatting with an English gentleman who had worked abroad in various countries for a number of years. I commented that the east London in his accent was there but overlaid with other inflections: just as when I went back to Glasgow people say my accent has changed.


"Oh it's Glasgow, mate! I thought you sounded posh Edinburgh." was his reply. furious furious furious

Bru literally wet himself on the spot. Erm

On the way to the game I was telling Baz, the ex-nippy scrum half, how important Frodo was to Scotland and how the sum of his game was greater than the parts. Frodo was ponderous, glacially slow. I understand why people are criticising Dancer, but when you are getting slow ball, standing still there is not much you can do.


Seeing it live you miss a lot of things but prior to watching the recording here's my broad brush impression.


We played really well. We outplayed the Boks for large parts of the game.

There was a real belief in their ability to compete, and win, but this led to rather foolhardy decisions when slightly more pragmatic choices might have been better in the long run.

Huw Jones almost scored an unbelievable individual try.


Batman looked totally cream-crackered when he came off so whatever else may be said about his performance lack of effort would be unfair.


Frodo, was criminally slow.


Posh Edinburgh. furious furious furious furious

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by 123456789. on Sun Nov 18, 2018 3:51 pm

One habit we need to get into is taking whatever points are on offer whenever they are on offer against these teams unless we're either more than 10 points ahead or in front. I do wonder however if the restart inability is such that the decision makers think taking three points is pointless if we can't retrieve the ball and then clear our lines from the kick-off.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 4:46 pm

Wilson cream cake crackered when he came off! Means he's put in a shift? I'd say it shows he's unfit.

I've not seen the tackle, ruck clear of carry stats, I could be wrong, but I'd say Wilson was bottom for all three from the back row.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by TJ on Sun Nov 18, 2018 5:17 pm

tiger - you would be right.  6 carries for 15 m  compared to 7 for 12 adn 8 for 18so more yardage but less carries than the other two back row and 9 tackles 3 missed compared to 11 and 10 none missed

No ruck count on espn scrum.com

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 5:59 pm

Shame the ruck clearouts don't get counted. Vitally important part of the game these days.

I know Wilson has his fans, most importantly the coaches are fans, but I've never seen him knocking an opponent on their backside, never seen him burst through a tackle and make a line break. I can only recall him making a couple of turnovers. He's just a passenger in my view.

Backrow for Arg should be:
Skinner (give him another shot at 6)
Struass
Watson

Ritchie to bench purely due to him covering 6 and 7.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by Eejit on Sun Nov 18, 2018 5:59 pm

jimbopip wrote:
"Oh it's Glasgow, mate! I thought you sounded posh Edinburgh." was his reply. furious furious furious


Always was suspicious of your fondness for Harvey Nicks and all things perfumed Jimbo. An undercover Luvvie if I ever saw one.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by BigGee on Sun Nov 18, 2018 6:07 pm

tigertattie wrote:Shame the ruck clearouts don't get counted. Vitally important part of the game these days.

I know Wilson has his fans, most importantly the coaches are fans, but I've never seen him knocking an opponent on their backside, never seen him burst through a tackle and make a line break. I can only recall him making a couple of turnovers. He's just a passenger in my view.

Backrow for Arg should be:
Skinner (give him another shot at 6)
Struass
Watson

Ritchie to bench purely due to him covering 6 and 7.  

I think we might well see Gary Graham making an appearance in this one. Maybe on the bench or perhaps he might feel that Skinner has had two good runouts and could do with a rest as well. He did not release him back to Newcastle this weekend, unlike some of the other squad members who play in England and if he was not planning to play him, then why bring him into the squad?

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by mikey_dragon on Sun Nov 18, 2018 6:25 pm

Biltong wrote:
Eejit wrote:

There are games in the international Calendar when we can say that we are probably up against it but the Boks at Murrayfield is a game we should be winning every time these days.

Good luck with that.

Disrespectful. The transformation of this team under Erasmus is remarkable if you remember where they were previously. It’s got to the point that with their top players available SA can defeat the best in the world. Scotland lucky to lose just by 6 after spending 80 minutes offside....

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by TJ on Sun Nov 18, 2018 6:27 pm

Mikey - why are you trolling on a scotland thread.  grow up.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by mikey_dragon on Sun Nov 18, 2018 6:50 pm

Hmm whilst we routinely have Scots coming onto Wales threads trolling; claiming we’re always offside; claiming we would have lost by 50 if it weren’t for the ref; latching onto Australia; encouringaing the English to join in the trolling - I post comments on topic then get accused of trolling. A strange state of affairs indeed chin.

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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

Post by tigertattie on Sun Nov 18, 2018 9:35 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:Hmm whilst we routinely have Scots coming onto Wales threads trolling; claiming we’re always offside; claiming we would have lost by 50 if it weren’t for the ref; latching onto Australia; encouringaing the English to join in the trolling - I post comments on topic then get accused of trolling. A strange state of affairs indeed chin.

Saying Wales are offside isn't trolling when it's true

But the SA Turnaround under Erasmus has been nothing short of impressive. It's like us when we got Cotter.
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Re: Scotland v South Africa Saturday 17th November

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