Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


PRO14 Round 3: Toyota Cheetahs 24–52 Glasgow Warriors

Cheetahs v Glasgow
Graphic © Scottish Rugby Blog

The first stop on Glasgow’s mini-tour to South Africa got off to a breath-taking start, followed by an excellent second-half performance from the Warriors that secured all five league points in the Guinness PRO14.

From Adam Hastings’ kick-off they retained possession deep in Cheetahs territory, and after several strong carries and a bit of patience Hastings found enough space to dummy and weave through two challenges and get the scoreboard ticking barely minutes in.

With Stuart Hogg missing out through an ankle injury, and Peter Horne’s kicking radar malfunctioning, it was Hastings who converted to round off the first passage of play.

That sort of pace was hardly to stop.

With both teams favoured style to be of the “fast and loose” variety, action swept from one end to the other, and it was from quick turnover possession that the home side reduced their arrears. DTH van der Merwe couldn’t handle Horne the Elder’s off-load, Nico Lee gathered and kicked on. With nobody at home for Glasgow, winger William Small-Smith was able to dive on the ball just before it dribbled over the side-line.

The Cheetahs capitalised on loose ball again just moments later, with a sensational pitch-length, and width, try finished off by full-back Malcom Jaer from scrum-half Meyer’s nicely weighted cross-kick.

Alex Dunbar was then sent to the bin for a high-tackle, and from the subsequent short Cheetahs line-out, Meyer again saw space in behind and chipped ahead, narrowly losing out in a foot-race with Seymour to ground the ball. Plenty of drama for a game less than fifteen minutes old.

The turbo-charged Cheetahs were denied a try following more scintillating rugby, Maxwane and Jaer this time tearing Glasgow apart down the right-wing, only for the final pass to go forward.

Glasgow retaliated. First Jackson and then Seymour went close while advantages were being played for collapsing mauls, and at the third attempt Glasgow eventually got their reward. Harley was hauled down just short of the try-line, but had the awareness to pop the ball off for Price to score on his return to the starting line-up.

Price, as he is sometimes prone to, was then penalised almost straight away for offside which the hosts put to the sidelines. Their initial attack was halted and seemingly out of momentum, only for replacement Tian Schoeman to accelerate through the tackle of Harley into the heart of the Glasgow 22, hold off Gray and pass out of the tackle to set Lee away under the sticks.

Despite Glasgow having the lion’s share of possession in the first half, it was the speedy Cheetahs who had been the more ruthless predators on the paddock.

Half time: Toyota Cheetahs 19-14 Glasgow Warriors

The second-half started with an unfortunate bang for Tommy Seymour. He collided with earlier try-scorer Malcolm Jaer whilst performing one of his trademark aerial-takes, and it was decreed that the Cheetahs’ man had acted recklessly when initiating the contact, so he was off for ten minutes.

It took Seymour about one minute to gain revenge and edge the Warriors back in front. It was another of his trademark plays, coming into midfield for the set-piece and slaloming his way past all in front of him.

A fired-up Seymour was dragging tacklers with him, the ball was quickly shifted to opposite winger Van der Merwe who made inroads towards the Cheetahs line. Replacement loose-head prop Allan was last to carry on the charge and Price was on his shoulder to claim his second try of the night from front-row range. Unfortunately for Glasgow, whilst celebrating the try, they were forced to replace starting tighthead Zander Fagerson, losing him to what looked like a pretty serious injury.

Glasgow gained excellent field position when Alex Allan went blasting up the pitch and fed Harley who made a few metres of his own before feeding Price. Although Horne spilled Price’s subsequent pass forward, Glasgow dominated at the scrum to win another set-piece penalty. Hastings’ ambitiously went for touch rather than the easy three-points on offer and luckily it proved to be the right decision. With the man advantage Glasgow were able to find DTH with a bit of space on his left-wing, and he did what he does best, for Glasgow’s third try of the sin-bin period.

As soon as he had returned to the field, fleet-footed full-back Jaer started to make amends, finishing off another rocket-paced Cheetahs attack. It reduced the deficit to 24-35 with just over twenty minutes on the clock which at the rate either side was scoring was hardly insurmountable for the hosts.

Rennie had decided that was still enough on the clock to also make some back-field changes. Price wasn’t going to get his hat-trick as he was replaced by George Horne, and Alex Dunbar made way for Huw Jones first appearance of the season. Those two replacements combined to set another Glasgow attack darting down the left, but the Warriors would eventually have to settle for three points rather than five on this occasion from Hastings boot.

The 5-pointer did come soon enough though, a belated birthday present for the once again brilliant Callum Gibbins. Schoeman’s pass was loose, George Turner did brilliantly to scoop the ball up from his ankles and set his captain cantering away to make it a three-try lead for Glasgow.

The Cheetahs had finally run out of gas, and Glasgow, now baring their own sizeable teeth, were to hit the half-century late on. Another mistake from the home-side deep in their own half, led to George Horne, shifted to the wing to accommodate Nick Frisby at scrum-half, crossing in the corner. Hastings nailed the tricky conversion to finish the scoring, and finish with a 100% success rate from the tee.

Rennie and his coaching staff will be delighted with the application and precision shown by his side in the second half. The front-row of Kebble, Brown and Fagerson continued to impress, whilst Cummings and Gray ensured Glasgow had the upper hand in the line-out. These solid platforms allowed the Warriors to keep the pressure on in the second-half, and unlike in the first, they finished those chances off.

Referee: Frank Murphy (IRFU)

SRBlog Man of the Match: Becoming a bit of a habit this, going to have to give it to Adam Hastings again. Perfect place kicking, scored a try himself and led Glasgow’s second-half charge with his intelligent play and decision-making.

71 Responses

  1. I certainly miss Alba’s coverage & being on the tight side, it was great to get some coverage on free channels!
    A game of 2 yellow cards – Weegies keeping the Cheetahs our while Dunbar had a chance to reflect on his ever-so-slightly high tackle & then ruthlessly piling on 21 points as Jaer was considering that he might have been lucky to get just a yellow. Glasgow coughed up way too much ball in the first half & looked very sleepy against a lightning quick & oppportunist Cheetahs attack. However the ruthless approach shown in the second half was good to see. Difficult to pick out a stellar performance but Ali Price took his chance well to highlight his support running & Hastings was consistent off the tee & got the try-fest rolling. Harley was involved in a lot of good stuff & JG put in a shift (still feel he should make a few more yards & is too easy to bring down for a big guy). Also a couple of great cameos from Allan & Turner – loved GT’s offload for Gibbons’ try. Hopefully Rennie will be teaching everyone how to hold onto a ball during training this week!

  2. Johnny Gray has to be one of the most passive locks in Tier 1 rugby. As you say he just doesn’t make the yards and his tackles while looking good on a stats sheet are rarely dominant. Hastings development seemed to have plateaued in the last couple of seasons but so far this season he is really kicking it up a gear.

    1. Hastings is just about to turn 22 and last year was his first year as a fully-fledged professional, and you thought he’d plateaued???

      Gray might not be the most destructive lock but he was excellent on Saturday and is by far the best lock available to Scotland and a brilliant test player.

      Sometimes the criticism from Scotland fans is hilarious – we seem to think every one of our players should be the best in the world.

      1. Yeah I did. I’ve been watching him from his first Bath game and until this season he hadn’t shown any progression from Bath and saw none last season as well. Players fail to live up to potential, players peak early. He was looking like one not progressing but has stepped up. What I find laughable is the lack of an ability to look upon others views objectively demonstrated by some Scotland fans. As for your last comment I assume that was aimed at someone else? The royal we perhaps, seeing as it has no relevance to my point?

      2. My frustration is most bloggers are oblivious to the fact Hastings had a career before Glasgow. He is a product of the Bath Academy and is underminded because of his uncle and father . He had a mixed time last season but most of his footwork and speeed of response were all evident when at Bath.

        My only minor point is the balance between resting him and finding a backup or we will have another singleton standout player as we had with mmph what is his name again , yes Finn and we have presently with Hoggy whom we managed fne without last night. He seems to keep missing out on the 50 pointers.

      3. FF Hastings has been a professional since he was 18. Stop trying to lecture people about their lack of knowledge when yours is awful.

        FYI Hastings looks fantastic and has progressed massively over the past 18 months.

      4. I seem to have touched a nerve! Everyone is entitled to their opinion but I’m well aware he was at Bath before Glasgow – in the academy. He played in the LV cup and a handful of other occasions. He was nowhere near their match day squad in meaningful games as you’d expect for a player at his career stage. Last year was his first season as a fully fledged pro. I think he did pretty well and his season was crowned by a storming game against Argentina. Blake – you have actually agreed with my point, that he didn’t plateau last season but developed well. Lots of fans on the Glasgow board expected him to immediately replace Finn despite him having only about a dozen pro-games to his name. So I do think the OP was wrong to imply he’d overcome some career hitch.

        Re: Gray. He’s one of our few players who could genuinely become world class and I think it’s pretty extraordinary how the OP has written him off as one of the most passive locks on tier 1 rugby, especially after a game in which him and Harley were lauded for turning the match with their aggression and work rate. But hey – that’s just my opinion, so relax. Us Scottish fans have a pretty long track record at moaning about our best players just because they aren’t perfect players. Just look at the treatment of Laidlaw over the years…

        P.s personally I think Hastings will be better than Finn and take his jersey but it won’t be well after the World Cup is, probably a couple of seasons after. He just has a more rounded game.

      5. Blake (if that is your real name) what you seem to forget is to read peoples statements correctly.
        FF said that last year was his first as a (fully fledged Pro)

        He was an academy prospect working with Ford and the Welsh 10 under bath.

        Last season he was an understudy to Finn and still getting little bits of game time here and there.

        Get Educated.

        Also no one is interested in your squad for internationals at this point, its not relavent to the topic so keep it to yourself.

      6. FF I apologise. I’m autistic so whilst I’ve got a great memory I’m terrible at understand context and meaning sometime.

        I thought you were being mean to original poster and claiming last season was Hastings 1st season as a pro. Now it’s been explained to me what you meant I get you meant and the OP was in the wrong.

        I’m quite straight to the point and passionate about what I believe but I apologise if I was being rude to you.

        I agree with you regards to Jonny Gray. He does all the dirty work yet gets so much unfair criticism. For me McInally, Jonny Gray, Barclay, Hamish Watson, Russell, Huw Jones and Hogg are Scotland’s stand-out players.

        Have a nice Sunday.

      7. No worries everyone posts here because they love Scottish rugby. My snark in the original post was unnecessary too. I think now we have so much Scottish talent to celebrate its a lot more fun being a Scottish fan than 5 years ago

  3. Great win, but I can understand if Cheetahs and their fans feel frustrated with Murphy. Shame to see Fagerson go off injured, and I’m wondering why Kebble was subbed at half-time – hopefully our newly badass first-choice front row aren’t all crocked already!

    Good to see Huw Jones back and Seymour looking sharper, and Price looks to have started to regain his previous good form, although the Horne brothers seem to be losing theirs a wee bit. Really pleased with the forwards for the third game in a row!

    1. Teamcam- Props generally don’t tend to be on the pitch for much more than 50 minutes and Allan is a quality player – was arguably the man of the match last night. Don’t get your problem.

      1. Blake: it’s unusual for a prop to be taken off at half-time unless they’re playing poorly or injured. He wasn’t playing poorly, so I’m concerned he might be injured…

      2. He had a knock at the end of the first half so was taken off as a precaution. He doesn’t appear on the injury list so hopefully nothing too serious. Fagerson’s injury is bad news as he’s been playing really well.

    2. Agree re Horne’s but have never rated Peter highly and wonder why he is in the Scotland squad. He is NOT International class

  4. Thought Allan, Gibbins, Price, Hastings, the Horne brothers, Van Der Merwe and Seymour were the stand-out players. For me Allan was man of the match his carrying was phenomenal. When you consider only Munster and Glasgow(twice now) have beaten the Cheetahs away this is fantastic result. Not without it’s downfall’s i.e defending but the attacking efforts more than made up for it.

    1. I believe Cheetahs have lost in the region of 9 of their best players from last season – they are not the side the were last season as we can see from their results.

  5. A great game , the kicked ball travels so far on the High Veldt. Great to see both sides making the most of the low oxygen plateau and what a game to watch. I think we are seeing Seymour getting back to his best , well done Tommy , he has turned a corner.

  6. Neils official player ratings.

    1. Kebble – 7
    2. Brown- 7
    3. Fagerson – 7
    4. Cummings – 6
    5. Gray – 7
    6. Harley – 7.5
    7. Gibbins – 8
    8. Ashe – 6
    9. Price – 8
    10. Hastings – 8
    11. DTH – 7
    12. Horne – 6
    13. Dunbar- 5
    14. Seymour – 9
    15. Jackson – 6

    16. Turner – 7
    17. Allan – 8
    18. Rae – 5
    19. Fagerson – 6
    20. Fusaro – 5
    21. Horne – 5
    22. Frisby – 6
    23. H Jones – 7

    The Ref – 4 As a glasgow supporter i can say this Ref was in our favour alot and alot of times the Cheetas were hard done by. Also kept going to the Tmo on tries because he could not keep up with the pace of the game and needed to slow it down to get his breath back.

    Man of the Match – Seymour

    Hastings close but got caught a few times out on the wing and skinned.

    G.Horne is not longer definite first choice in my mind, he seems to have come into this season with an attitude like some sort of Welsh player.

    You can see in the pack Rennie will be picking Kebble, Harley And Gibbins as the consistent choices in the pack for this season. (i expect those guys bar injury will have the most appearances/minutes at the end of the season)

  7. Excellent performance but hope Fagerson is not a serious injury. I hope that front row is fit for the Sarries game. Brilliant to see Hastings step up. Two MOM awards back to back is sensational. That said, Russell is a world class fly half and has operated often brilliantly at the highest level. Hastings has that challenge to surmount. I thought Harley was outstanding and he is so consistent. Lastly, great to see Price rehabilitated. Horne won’t be our first choice scrum half in the RWC and we need a top quality experienced back up, then Horne.

    1. I’ve got my doubts George Horne will ever be an international 9 as he’s just too wee. Price has far better defence so hopefully he can find some form for 2019.

      1. Shane Williams never suffered from his size and I think Townsend likes to have more than one option. I do like Hornes snappy direct pass and his agility .In my opinion SH’s come in different sizes , they either play like the first of the backs or an extra forward

      2. Much has been made of max Green at Bath for being too small and light for the pro game at 82kg. Horne is listed as 79kg so while I don’t necessarily agree they are too small it does highlight just how light GH is even compared to other small 9’s

      3. Horne is exactly 1 cm shorter than Laidlaw, who has got a fair few caps. Anyway, I’m always being told size isn’t important :)

      4. Er…..Aaron Smith is five seven and only a couple of kilos heavier than G Horne. Size isn’t everything at 9.

  8. It would be nice to see Glasgow get through this kind of fixture without making so many errors. Stupid decision making cost them in Europe last season and that’s the part of the game they need to improve.

    The guy slating Jonny Gray further up is off his head. He leads from the front every week and is the one player Glasgow can’t afford to lose at the moment.

    1. Rugby Pass stats have Ethebez making 1 carry for 1 metre and 11 tackles with 1 missed on Saturday in Wellington. Subbed after 50 mins for Synman who is very poor despite being a giant.

      The previous week he made 6 tackles and one carry for one metre in 60 minutes then off for Synnam who made 2 carrys for 4 metres and zero tackles!

      I’ll stick with Jonny.

  9. I’m not usually the first to comment, more often adding a few words long after the party’s finished. Maybe that would be better for Jonny G!! Interesting to read others’ views; I too would rather look on the positive side & think JG does a lot of unseen grunt around the park but just really want to see him make those bursts through a few tackles (easy for me to write I know). If he could consistently add that to his armoury then he would definitely be a top class lock. If someone can produce some stats to show I’ve got it all wrong, I would be happy to take it all back! But then great that this is the level of debate rather than whether there are actually 2 true locks for Scotland to put on the team sheet (still can’t get the times when Jason White was played there when Al Kellock was able and willing). On another note, looks like Wee Dunc is making a mark at Worcester albeit on the losing team. I would love it if he continues the resurgence that began last season & forces himself back into squad contention. 3 on-form fly halves would be a rare treat.

    1. Unless you have played in the front 5 it is hard to understand what they do and how effective they are, which makes them easy to overlook. I never get too concerned when we dont rate them for the invisible work they do, it is just life, sometimes we never know what we have till we lose it.

      I suspect the Glasgow squad respect J Gray and that is the only opinions that really count.

      1. JG is not “passive” and his stats show that clearly — one example I saw from Nov 16 he had what looked like 1.5 times the involvements of Wyn Jones, who’s not exactly lazy, including involvement in 11 of 19 phases in the final play.

        His style of play is perhaps more understated than some — he is not (usually) charging out of the line to flatten the 10. His runs also do not usually involve going over the top of someone.

        However, he’s usually available for the next phase, or at least the one after, and is not found lying about behind play trading insults and pulling shirts or giving away penalties all the time.

        He could probably be more aggressive in contact, but I’m not sure if he really is not capable (which I doubt), or if that’s just his natural style, or whether its a more considered approach towards what he and the coaches think is best for the team.

      2. We may be defining passive differently. I mean what you have termed aggressive in the tackle. He doesn’t win collisions. He floors his man but doesn’t knock him back or knock momentum out of the attack. I’m by no means saying he is a bad player. Some folk on here act like our players are beyond criticism when in truth we have arguably 2 world class players.

  10. In my view, you can’t pick 15 show ponies – you need a few guys who do the ugly, unglamorous stuff, too. Guys like Johnny Gray, Ryan Wilson and Rob Harley get through a tonne of work tackling and in the ruck that is just as important but doesn’t catch the eye like a line break.

    Secondly, JG is still just 24 years old, despite being around forever. His running has improved in the last 12 months or so (that dummy and try against Australia, line break vs Wales, etc.) and he is the sort of guy who will always strive to get better.

    1. Been really impressed with Rob Harley so far this season. He seems to be thriving under Rennie. He went well in the 2nd row where he’s looked lightweight in the past. He’s been supporting runners all over the pitch, been carrying more and he’s been his usual nuisance at the breakdown. Good chance of some more Scotland caps if he keeps this up.

      1. Agree that Rob is playing really well. Seems to have hugely improved his handling and I don’t remember him offloading before! Still doing the tackling, spoiling, dark arts stuff too. Good to hear Rennie name checking him for his workrate.

      2. Rob Harley has been consistently listed as the player the opposition doesn’t want to play against. IMO you cannot get higher praise!

  11. Gray carries far more than he used to, it’s the most improved part of his game. IMO the only issue with Gray is his lack of aggression – but that equally makes him a far more stable and reliable player. Pair him with a Nathan Hines type and you get the best of both worlds.

  12. Anyone know how much of the squad Glasgow have taken on their SA trip? Are we likely to see another almost full strength team against Kings next weekend and then some key players getting a rest for Dragons and Zebre at home before the start of Europe? Or does Rennie rest some players now and give them a run against Zebre so they are ready for the European games?

  13. On another note, Ben Robbins deserves a call-up for the Autumn international. He’s red hot right now. Was wondering what had happened to him the last couple of years after looking very handy for the u20s.

      1. No not really. I’ve watched Currie play a few times including when pro guys like A.Hastings, Vernon have played and he’s stood out more than them. Genuine question, is it essential to have a pro contract before getting a test cap?

      2. I wouldn’t say it was essential but I’d suggest it could be irresponsible to cap him before he’s had a pro cap. There is precedent, Matt Giteau, Ryan for Ireland but generally I’d think that building up to that is essential not necessarily because he isn’t good enough but because if it doesnt go well it could be a huge setback for him, much bigger than if he has been well prepared for it.

    1. This is a wind up right?

      If he’s currently not considered good enough to start/play for a pro team, perhaps that suggests he’s no where near ready for international rugby.

      He’s also red hot, in amateur rugby, which is a long way short of the pro game (hence the creation of the super 6 to try and bridge the gap). I mean there is so much wrong with this suggestion that I can only assume you are either Ben yourself (Hi Ben) or related to him in someway.

      I hope he makes it in the pro game and when ready steps up to international rugby, but he’s a long long long way from that currently

      1. The gap in standard is a lot closer than you seem to think. It’s really not long since G.Horne was playing for S.County and A.Hastings played for Currie last season, now they have test caps and folk are raving about both. It’s also not long ago Berghan was scratching around at Boroughmuir…didn’t even look that good for them. Robbins showed well for the Scotland u20 side. If you don’t rate Robbins then fair enough but I maintain that a guy starring for Currie is very likely good enough to at least hold his own in the pro 14 and if you can do that then test rugby is not a big jump from that either.

      2. BLB – I’m sorry but are you saying the gap in standard from an amateur league to the highest level of rugby isn’t that big?! Every single player has said the step up from the pro14 to the Heineken cup is massive, and the step up again to full international is even bigger, to suggest a player can move from playing only amateur rugby (because he hasn’t set foot on the pitch for Edinburgh or Glasgow) to the toughest level of rugby is realistic, is crazy.

        The players you listed, were all turning out for their pro teams as well, which is not something Robbins has done.

        I’m not saying he’s not going to be capable of making the step up, but he needs to actually be considered good enough for his pro team and actually play at least 1 game at a higher level first to see if he’s capable before he’s thrown into the test arena. Considering he’s aligned to Edinburgh (i believe) and he wasn’t even considered for a run out in the preseason suggests he’s not yet ready for that step up.

      3. It is probaly a wind up, save your breath . The big difference is the speed as you progress up the ranks from amateur to pro to international. Much better balanced and at intense speed.

        I need your help – anyone.

        I have premier sports on my Sky box, but how do I stream that to my laptop and phone .Does anyine have any ideas?

      4. Ben F – You’re probably right.

        In terms of your question, I think you get access to the prem player app with Sky, so you can download that on your phone or access their webpage. You may need to register though

  14. Velacott is turning in a good performance here at Kingsholm , so if you want him, you had better move quickly.

    1. I think Vellacott has already turned Toonie down once. Although he’s a much better chance of getting capped for England with Ben Youngs off the boil and Danny Care being a bit rubbish every time he looks like first choice.

      1. I think the emergence of George Horne – who often kept Vellacott on the bench at U20 level – over the summer tour eased a lot of fears around these parts over missing out on Vellacott. Sam Hidalgo-Clyne hitting form at the tail of last season and Pyrgos refinding his this season make these things less of a worry too…

    2. Surely Vellacott is well down the SH pecking order behind (in no particular) order: Laidlaw, Price, Horne, SHC, Pyrgos and maybe even Fowles?

      1. Laidlaw will probably retire from test rugby after the World Cup, Pyrgos is not quite good enough to nail down a place at international level, Fowles is rubbish. Wouldn’t you rather have a potential third SH to battle with Price and Horne long-term?

        SHC is a bit of a wildcard. He looked very good when he won his early caps but has spent years getting back to form. Maybe he’ll make it back into the reckoning, maybe not.

        TBH it is the future of Cameron redpath that is more interesting. Looked like a done deal but that was before England’s squad looked to be hitting a very rough patch.

      2. To be honest I have not really seen Vellacott in action, but if he can execute a decent box kick, he’s right up there ;-)

      3. Vellacott is a better scrum half than any of ours other than Laidlaw and arguably Price at his absolute best but he’s declared his preference to play for England

      4. Bold claim there JP. Still behind Care and Young’s in the English setup. I’d as soon have Horne jnr before either of them as a backup to Laidlaw.

      5. He’s behind Wiggleseworth and Spencer too, probably Robson as well although he should be ahead of Care but those lot aren’t in our set up. Horne is better in some attributes but as a rounded 9, BV is currently ahead for me. All a moot point unless BV switches allegiances.

      6. Vellacot doesn’t even start for Glaws but he’s better than all our scrum halves bar Laidlaw.

        Aye right.

        I wish players mums would stop posting about their children here.

  15. Off topic but England’s recruitment of John Mitchell as their new attack coach is an interesting move. England now have two senior coaches with very autocratic styles and records of relationship breakdowns with their squads. Mitchell’s record is mixed to say the least, but the big risk is that the atmosphere in the squad continues to deteriorate, as has been rumoured for the past year or so. Maybe a good season to pick up the holy grail of a win at Twickenham off the back of a disastrous 6N for England?

    It would be highly amusing if England’s form continues to unravel ahead of the World Cup as the Jones revolution comes off the rails.

    1. Jones and Mitchell are like when you were a kid watching WWE and the Rock and Stonecold were in a tag team. Just a matter of time before one is smashed with a chair and everything around them is destroyed. Eddie Jones will not be England boss by RWC

  16. Bad news for Glasgow. Now confirmed that Fagerson and Hogg out for opening European games (and AIs).

    Beating Saracens isn’t essential to qualify but would take a whole heap of pressure off the Lyon double header. We really need to pick up a win away at Cardiff in round 2 but that should be possible even without those two.

    1. After the lack of game time we seen Hoggy have for Glasgow last season this is a blow, big time. Hopefully we get him back, fit and flying for the December European double header.

      I agree with your thought on Europe, whilst beating Sarries at home isn’t essential, it should be a win we target, like we do all our home games.

  17. Dreadful blow for club & country, Hogg is the one man who can make the difference whatever the opponents. In his last game (Vs Connacht) he was the difference between a win & a loss. Hope he can be back sooner than the 2 months stated.

    1. If its not right, better to deal with stuff now, miss AIs, back through club for 6N and looking towards peaking at RWC, reasonably well rested.

      The “benefit” may well outweigh the loss in the end.

    2. Providing he is fit and firing from Jan onwards it could be a blessing in disguise. Forces us to blood and bed in young players like Kinghorn before a RWC and has Hogg going into RWC well rested. The Autumn tests are important but these ones are about building for the next 12months. There’s a silver lining.

      1. Agreed, I still feel that the side often plays better as a team without Hogg.

        Giving Kinghorn a chance would give us strength in depth and give Hogg a rest.

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