Planet Rugby

Scotland make it two from two

20th August 2011 19:10

Share:

Scotland s scrum half Mike Blair scores v italy

Winner: Mike Blair scores for Scotland

Scotland beat Italy 23-12 at Murrayfield on Saturday to complete their World Cup preparations with a second consecutive win.

Both teams scored two tries but three penalties from the boot of home fly-half Dan Parks proved the difference after 80 minutes.

The result sees the Scots build on the 10-6 win over Ireland a fortnight ago although the success was marred somewhat by the sight of Nikki Walker leaving the field on a stretcher in the closing stages with a knee injury.

Coach Andy Robinson will name his World Cup squad on Monday.

The crowd in sun-kissed Edinburgh found immediate cause for excitement as the Scots surged straight into attack. The hosts got off to a cracking start as Alasdair Dickinson scored his first Test try on the ten minute mark following a slaloming run by wing Max Evans.

Italy replied through a try from wing Tommaso Benvenuti which Mirco Bergamasco converted but Parks' second penalty gave Scotland a 13-7 half-time lead.

Scotland continued to earn the bulk of possession and territory, but the good early work was spoiled when they gave away a series of turnovers.

The action continued to be scrappy and disjointed after the restart with the Scots looking increasingly nervy.

And it was the Italians who were producing the more attractive and constructive rugby - much to the frustration of the vast majority among the 20,245-strong crowd.

The visitors' pluck and endeavour was rewarded in the 48th minute as Treviso scrum-half Fabio Semenzato scored the second try.

The Scots' fringe defence was markedly absent as the smallest man on the pitch darted through a gap to score from close quarters after a well-controlled pick and drive sequence.

Scotland needed a stroke of good fortune and the vision of vice-captain Mike Blair to ease the jitters.

Andrea Masi fatally delayed his clearance kick, giving Edinburgh scrum-half Blair the chance to charge it down and win the race for the critical try.

The conversion was a formality for Parks, who stretched the gap to eight points, and two minutes later he thumped over a 40-metre penalty to give the hosts even more breathing space.

For Scotland:
Tries: Dickinson, Blair
Cons: Parks 2
Pens: Parks 3

For Italy:
Tries: Benvenuti, Semenzato
Cons: Bergamasco

Scotland: 15 Rory Lamont, 14 Max Evans, 13 Nick De Luca, 12 Graeme Morrison, 11 Simon Danielli, 10 Dan Parks, 9 Mike Blair, 8 Richie Vernon, 7 John Barclay, 6 Kelly Brown, 5 Alastair Kellock (capt), 4 Nathan Hines, 3 Moray Low, 2 Scott Lawson, 1 Alasdair Dickinson.
Replacements: 16 Dougie Hall, 17 Euan Murray, 18 Richie Gray, 19 Ross Rennie, 20 Chris Cusiter, 21 Ruaridh Jackson, 22 Nikki Walker.

Italy: 15 Andrea Masi, 14 Tommaso Benvenuti, 13 Gonzalo Canale, 12 Gonzalo Garcia, 11 Mirco Bergamasco, 10 Luciano Orquera, 9 Fabio Semenzato, 8 Sergio Parisse (c), 7 Robert Barbieri, 6 Paul Derbyshire, 5 Cornelius Van Zyl, 4 Carlo Antonio Del Fava, 3 Martin Castrogiovanni, 2 Fabio Ongaro, 1 Andrea Lo Cicero.
Replacements: 16 Tommaso D'Apice, 17 Lorenzo Cittadini, 18 Marco Bortolami, 19 Alessandro Zanni, 20 Edoardo Gori, 21 Riccardo Bocchino, 22 Joshua Furno.

Venue: Murrayfield
Referee: Dave Pearson (England)
Assistant referees: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland), Robin Goodliffe (England)
TMO: Huw Watkins (Wales)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand vs AustraliaNew Zealand vs Australia Preview
Argentina vs South Africa20:40
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Top 14
Friday , August 22
Toulouse vs CastresToulouse vs Castres Preview
Saturday , August 23
Brive vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Toulon vs La Rochelle18:30
Bordeaux-Begles vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Montpellier vs Grenoble18:30
Bayonne vs Oyonnax18:30
Stade Francais vs Lyon20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , August 22
Pumas vs GriquasPumas vs Griquas Preview
Saturday , August 23
Blue Bulls vs Eastern Province Kings15:00
Western Province vs Lions17:05
Sharks vs Cheetahs19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Friday , August 22
Waikato vs CanterburyWaikato vs Canterbury Preview
Hawkes Bay vs TaranakiHawkes Bay vs Taranaki Preview
Saturday , August 23
Northland vs Wellington14:35
Counties Manukau vs Otago16:35
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu vs Auckland14:35
Bay Of Plenty vs Tasman16:35
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato vs Taranaki19:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour 21 - 25 Southland
Sunday , August 17
Tasman 35 - 15 Hawkes BayTasman vs Hawkes Bay Report
Northland 23 - 28 Manawatu
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 16
Australia 12 - 12 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
South Africa 13 - 6 ArgentinaSouth Africa vs Argentina Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Clermont Auvergne 30 - 26 GrenobleClermont Auvergne vs Grenoble Report
Montpellier 16 - 19 Racing Metro ParisMontpellier vs Racing Metro Paris Report
Toulouse 20 - 19 Oyonnax
Bordeaux-Begles 18 - 9 Lyon
Brive 37 - 15 La Rochelle
Castres 22 - 25 Stade Francais
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Lions 60 - 19 Eastern Province KingsLions vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Cheetahs 34 - 27 GriquasCheetahs vs Griquas Report
Western Province 41 - 17 Blue BullsWestern Province vs Blue Bulls Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Otago 28 - 14 North Harbour
Wellington 25 - 37 WaikatoWellington vs Waikato Report
Canterbury 48 - 9 AucklandCanterbury vs Auckland Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 15
Bayonne 15 - 29 ToulonBayonne vs Toulon Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Sharks 34 - 17 PumasSharks vs Pumas Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Southland 34 - 23 Bay Of Plenty
Thursday , August 14
Taranaki 9 - 9 Counties ManukauTaranaki vs Counties Manukau Report
More ITM Cup results
Currie Cup
Saturday , August 9
Griquas 24 - 31 SharksGriquas vs Sharks Report
Pumas 28 - 21 CheetahsPumas vs Cheetahs Report
Lions 41 - 13 Blue BullsLions vs Blue Bulls Report
Friday , August 8
Eastern Province Kings 16 - 35 Western ProvinceEastern Province Kings vs Western Province Report
More Currie Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00