Scotland are set to feel the damage of their early World Cup exit following Sunday’s 28-21 defeat to Japan.
Gregor Townsend’s team failed to make the knock-out stages after losing two of their four pool games, and the future of a number of squad players will now come under question.
And one of Scotland’s longest serving players has admitted he may decide to call time on his international career after this latest setback.
Scrum-half Greig Laidlaw, capped 76 times for Scotland, says he will take time to assess his future with the national team.
The Clermont Auvergne player said: “I’ll go away and have a think. Tonight it’s about staying together as a group.
It wasn't to be for Scotland, who were outplayed by a magnificent Japan.
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) October 13, 2019
“Tonight is not about me. I’ll go away and talk to the people I need to talk to and make my decision from there.”
Laidlaw, who turned 34 on Saturday, did not say when he expects to reach a decision.
Scotland had won their previous seven showdowns with the Brave Blossoms, racking up their biggest ever score with a 100-8 pummelling back in 2004.
But the tournament hosts went into the game ranked higher than Gregor Townsend’s team and Laidlaw could not argue with their win.
He said: “We knew Japan have really improved as a team since four years ago. We have to give them credit for the way they have progressed and the way we have performed this evening.
“We gave away two soft tries and we left ourselves with a mountain to climb. They didn’t catch us off guard, we actually started the game pretty well.
“We got into a lead, we never switched off, but we let Japan into the game.”
Watch: Japan supporters reach after another sensational win
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