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Scotland player ratings versus Samoa


Scotland player ratings versus Samoa

By PA Authors
By Online Editors

Scotland picked up their first win of the Rugby World Cup thanks to a 34-0 defeat of Samoa, which also delivered an all-important bonus point.

Yet Gregor Townsend knows his team are far from the finished article. Following the lacklustre loss to Ireland there are still plenty of areas for improvement here, with Scotland relying on two penalty tries to secure the bonus point which could be crucial to their Pool A fate.

This is how we rated the players after a mixed performance in Kobe:

STUART HOGG: The full-back chose his moments to kick to perfection – none more so than with his huge 40-yard drop goal. 8

DARCY GRAHAM: The Edinburgh wing was a bundle of energy on a night when Scotland had to be at their best. 7

CHRIS HARRIS: Given the nod over Duncan Taylor and did not disappoint with some meaty carries. 6

SAM JOHNSON: Struggled to keep a grip of the ball amid the sweaty conditions but made up for his mistakes with some solid defence. 5

SEAN MAITLAND: Did brilliantly to collect Finn Russell’s cross-field kick to dot down the opening try and was only denied a second by Ed Fidow’s illegal tackle at the end. 7

FINN RUSSELL: Produced two moments of magic to create the first two tries but threw in the odd mistake to take the shine off his display. 7

GREIG LAIDLAW: Off the beat with his kicking game at times but kept his feet to get across the line for his side’s second touchdown. 5

ALLAN DELL: The London Irish loosehead prop lasted just 12 minutes before trudging off with a head knock. 5

STUART McINALLY: The skipper was under pressure to lead his men to a big victory after last week’s Irish shocker and led by example with some big carries. 7

WP NEL: Quieter game than last week in Yokohama, when he was one of the few to emerge with credit, but really put the Samoans to the sword at the scrum. 6

GRANT GILCHRIST: The Edinburgh lock carried effectively in midfield and was a solid operator when it came to the lineout. 6

JONNY GRAY: Did brilliantly to stack up his usual high tackle count amid searing temperatures but failed to make much ground in the loose. 6

MAGNUS BRADBURY: Made the most of his late call-up to the squad with an impressive display as he took the fight to the Pacific Islanders’ big men. 7

JAMIE RITCHIE: Given the task of filling in for the injured Hamish Watson at openside but did not let Gregor Townsend down with an assured display. 7

BLADE THOMSON: An outstanding display from the Scarlets number eight as he consistently made ground with the ball in hand. 8

Replacements: Gordon Reid came on early for the injured Dell and won an important scrum penalty while Fraser Brown replaced McInally early in the second half and played a vital role in winning Scotland’s first penalty try. 6

Watch: Erasmus talks Tier 2 opposition

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Scotland player ratings versus Samoa
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