2012 Six Nations Rugby: Time Is Now for Scotland as They Get Set to Face Wales
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It must be difficult for Scotland to forget about last weekend's Calcutta Cup defeat. The 13-6 heartbreaking loss to bitter rival England has been analysed and discussed from virtually every angle over the last seven days and Andy Robinson's squad must find a way to move on if they hope to triumph over a Welsh side brimming with confidence.
Winger Max Evans seems to have an idea of how he and his teammates can do that. Speaking to the media yesterday Evans said, "It's going to continue to be the time to deliver. We need to deliver a good performance. We've got to keep the confidence we had going into the England game."
The sentiment Evans expressed demonstrates the resilience and positivity that could carry Scotland to victory on Sunday. Rather than distance themselves from the painful loss, Evans will look for inspiration from his team's collective mindset before the match.
"It was a good performance and it was just the small margins," Evans insisted. "Get those right and it's a complete performance."
The player charged with creating opportunities and keeping tabs on the "margins" will be newly inserted No. 10, Greig Laidlaw. While the former scrum-half performed admirably in limited minutes against England, ex-Welsh captain Gwyn Jones piled on the pressure yesterday.
When asked about the Scotland attack, the BBC Wales commentator replied, "At the moment the way they are playing, they are so straight up-and-down, and so lacking in the basic skills that I would be disappointed if they were to score tries against us." Jones added that Laidlaw played like "a headless chicken" last week against England.
While the dearth of tries have frustrated Scottish players and coaches, Jones has provided Laidlaw and his teammates with even more motivation. After squandering a 10-point lead with three minutes to go in regulation, Scotland lost a dramatic 31-24 Six Nations match two years ago. Against a significantly favored Welsh side, Scotland would do well to remember that painful defeat.
Commenting on the latest edition on Millennium Stadium, Evans remained positive. "We've been setting ourselves up in similar situations as we got ourselves in against England," Evans reiterated. "We will get in those situations against Wales. It's knowing the right thing to do."
If Scotland can capitalize on their chances and play smart rugby, it could be their match to win.
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