On this week’s podcast we chat to Rory Lawson about the Barbarians, his work as a commentator and the weekend’s Pro 14 games. Cammy and Iain also look back at the weekend’s European action.
Under Andy “Build A Score” Robinson Scotland have improved. Split hairs if you want, but things are certainly looking better than they did only three years ago. Even the most pessimistic of supporters (i.e. any Scotsman) has to admit that.
Edinburgh finally reversed the losing streak that has dogged them since the end of last season, and did so in some style against a Leinster team that boasted most of its all-star Lions (save for Nathan Hines) returning to action just in time for the start of the season, I mean um, the Heineken Cup. Oh, and Tim Visser scored. Again.
Hopefully you were all watching the match as Scotland clinched a historic victory in Argentina at the weekend, but if you weren’t then you can see some highlights here.
Argentina 16 – 24 Scotland
For once in recent Scottish rugby memory we are greeted – nay, even rewarded – by a final scoreline that reflects the actual game that preceded it. Based on the way they played, Scotland should have been the only team that won this match, although time has taught us this doesn’t always mean they would have.
Further gloom in the scrum half department as McMillan has picked up a training injury too, although he is expected to recover and Lawson may not be as bad as first feared.
Interesting to see NZ have picked Carter and Smith in the centre for the warm up against Oz. Looking at their squad backs, even if they look to blood younger inexperienced players – which they may well do vs Scotland – they will still pose a big threat. Which makes me want to pee my pants a little seeing as I have a ticket.
New Zealand team to face Australia: Mils Muliaina, Hosea Gear, Conrad Smith, Dan Carter, Sitiveni Sivivatu; Stephen Donald, Jimmy Cowan; Tony Woodcock, Andrew Hore, Neemia Tialata, Brad Thorn, Ali Williams, Jerome Kaino, Richie McCaw (capt), Rodney So’oialo.
Replacements: Keven Mealamu, Greg Somerville, Anthony Boric, Adam Thomson, Piri Weepu, Ma’a Nonu, Isaia Toeava.
Bad news for Scotland’s squad preparations for the “autumn” (it’s already winter here in the north) internationals came yesterday with announcements that scrum halves Chris Cusiter (thumb), Rory Lawson (ribs) and centre Graeme Morrison would all be unavailable. Luckily Mark McMillan is able to step into the breach – he’s been in form for Glasgow, and it’s good to have a Heineken Cup winner and former U21 captain to call on. It’s a big blow for Cusiter, who always seems like he gets injured just as he is hitting form. Nikki Walker will also join the squad, having been released by the Ospreys. Morrison’s absence leaves the midfield looking a little lightweight – especially considering they may have to face big lads like Nonu and De Villiers running at them – could it be Rob Deweytime again?