Jamie Ritchie was one of the few Scotland players to emerge with credit from the World Cup but that has not stopped him searching for answers and improvement ahead of the Guinness Six Nations.

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The Edinburgh flanker missed the heavy opening defeat by Ireland with a fractured cheekbone and returned to put in a stellar performance in a 34-0 win over Samoa.

The 23-year-old put in a monumental effort in the decider against Japan, making 24 tackles and securing several turnovers, but Scotland fell short.

Several experienced players have since retired from international rugby including Greig Laidlaw, John Barclay and Tommy Seymour, while head coach Gregor Townsend has modified his preparations for the Six Nations, including heading to Spain for a training camp in the run-up to Saturday’s opener in Dublin.

Ritchie said: “It’s a bit of a clean slate and a chance for us to reset and take a good look at ourselves.

“There has been quite a lot of change with guys retiring and some coaches moving on. There’s a lot of change in the group, which is good, and it’s about everyone being on the same page and buying into the same standards around a lot of things.

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“We have changed a lot of things in terms of the structure of our days and week, and there have been a lot of things that have been fed back. Everyone has taken a good look at themselves, players and coaches.

“Something obviously had to change from the World Cup because we didn’t get it right. I think we have put the right ideas in place, it’s just about executing them.”

Ritchie, who has 14 caps, added: “For me, it’s kind of selfish but I felt my performances were quite good. I was happy with the way I played but obviously it wasn’t enough for us to win so there are bits of my game I can improve on. There’s always areas I can get better at.

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“That’s why boys get to this level, because they criticise themselves and want to get better.”

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