Planet Rugby

Scotland stay in the hunt

24th February 2013 15:40

Share:

Scotland v Ireland: Kelly Brown

Scotland: Shock the Irish

Scotland kept their Six Nations title hopes alive thanks to a hard fought 12-8 victory over Ireland at Murrayfield on Sunday.

It's the first time since 2001 that the Scots have won back-to-back Six Nations matches.

After trailing 8-0 early in the second half, the hosts put 12 unanswered points past their Celtic rivals thanks to the boot of scrum-half Greig Laidlaw that helped his team to an unlikely win and that effectively ends Ireland's Six Nations challenge.

It certainly wasn't the most memorable Championship clash ever witnessed, as the two teams served up a borefest in the first half with Ireland - who dominated possession throughout - heading into the break with a slender three-point lead.

However, Scotland's fightback in the second half breathed some life into a tight contest.

Ireland started the game with a roar and a hiss, with centre Luke Marshall breaking the Scots' defence with ease in his Test debut. But Ireland failed to convert pressure into points - even against 14 men after Scotland prop Ryan Grant was sin-binned - and only had a 35th-minute Paddy Jackson penalty to show for their dominance.

Ireland finally found the breakthrough they deserved when wing Craig Gilroy crossed early in the second half out wide. The tricky conversion from Jackson, who missed three times from the tee, was unsuccessful.

That try only seemed to give Scotland the wake-up needed to mount a comeback and it didn't take long for Laidlaw to put his team on the scoreboard with his first penalty kick of the match on 53 minutes.

Jackson pulled another penalty wide two minutes later, but Laidlaw showed the Irish rookie how it was done with his second three-pointer of the afternoon that cut the deficit to just two points and suddenly the crowd came alive.

Laidlaw continued to find his target and made no mistake with two more accurate kicks to give the Scots a four-point cushion entering the final five minutes of what was turning into a gripping finale.

But Ireland weren't prepared to roll over yet, and threatened to steal the match from their hosts when they awarded two attacking scrums 10m out from Scotland's tryline.

However, Scotland dug deep in defence and there was no way through for the Irish whose knock-on sent Murrayfield into raptures.

Man of the match: Scotland lock Jim Hamilton won the official gong, and his hard work at the set-piece was a real standout for the hosts. But we've opted for hero of the day Greig Laidlaw, who's four perfect kicks at goal handed Scotland victory.

Moment of the match: There weren't many. But those last few minutes that so nearly ended in heartbreak for the hosts was a real nail-biter.

Villain of the match: Ryan Grant's sin-binning didn't prove as costly as Paddy Jackson's three missed kicks at goal which ultimately cost his side dearly.

The scorers:

For Scotland:
Pens: Laidlaw 4
Yellow card:Grant (15th min)

For Ireland:
Try: Gilroy
Pen: Jackson

Scotland: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Sean Maitland, 13 Sean Lamont, 12 Matt Scott, 11 Tim Visser, 10 Ruaridh Jackson, 9 Greig Laidlaw, 8 Johnnie Beattie, 7 Kelly Brown (c), 6 Rob Harley, 5 Jim Hamilton, 4 Richie Gray, 3 Geoff Cross, 2 Ross Ford, 1 Ryan Grant.
Replacements: 16 Dougie Hall, 17 Moray Low, 18 Jon Welsh, 19 Alastair Kellock, 20 David Denton, 21 Henry Pyrgos, 22 Duncan Weir, 23 Max Evans.

Ireland: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Craig Gilroy, 13 Brian O'Driscoll, 12 Luke Marshall, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Conor Murray, 8 Jamie Heaslip (c), 7 Sean O'Brien, 6 Peter O'Mahony, 5 Donnacha Ryan, 4 Donncha O'Callaghan, 3 Mike Ross, 2 Rory Best, 1 Tom Court.
Replacements: 16 Sean Cronin, 17 Dave Kilcoyne, 18 Declan Fitzpatrick, 19 Devin Toner, 20 Iain Henderson, 21 Eoin Reddan, 22 Ronan O'Gara, 23 Luke Fitzgerald.

Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 5
Northampton vs Gloucester19:45
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , September 5
Ospreys vs Benetton Treviso19:35
Munster vs Edinburgh19:35
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , August 30
La Rochelle vs Toulouse14:45
Castres vs BayonneCastres vs Bayonne Preview
Lyon vs Brive18:30
Oyonnax vs Stade Francais18:30
Grenoble vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Toulon20:45
Friday , September 5
Montpellier vs Castres20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Saturday , August 30
Griquas vs Cheetahs15:00
Blue Bulls vs Western ProvinceBlue Bulls vs Western Province Preview
Eastern Province Kings vs Lions19:10
Friday , September 5
Western Province vs Eastern Province Kings19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Sunday , August 31
Taranaki vs Bay Of Plenty14:35
Auckland vs TasmanAuckland vs Tasman Preview
Wednesday, September 3
Manawatu vs Bay Of Plenty19:35
Thursday , September 4
Otago vs Canterbury19:35
Friday , September 5
Tasman vs Waikato18:05
Northland vs Hawkes Bay20:05
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Saturday , August 30
Counties Manukau 21 - 27 Hawkes BayCounties Manukau vs Hawkes Bay Report
Southland 22 - 33 Otago
North Harbour 16 - 22 Waikato
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 29
Clermont Auvergne 20 - 21 MontpellierClermont Auvergne vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Pumas 32 - 22 SharksPumas vs Sharks Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Wellington 21 - 27 ManawatuWellington vs Manawatu Report
Thursday , August 28
Canterbury 48 - 3 NorthlandCanterbury vs Northland Report
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato 17 - 46 TaranakiWaikato vs Taranaki Report
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu 7 - 35 AucklandManawatu vs Auckland Report
Bay Of Plenty 27 - 56 TasmanBay Of Plenty vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand 51 - 20 AustraliaNew Zealand vs Australia Report
Argentina 31 - 33 South AfricaArgentina vs South Africa Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Brive 6 - 21 Clermont AuvergneBrive vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Bordeaux-Begles 30 - 21 Racing Metro Paris
Stade Francais 23 - 20 Lyon
Toulon 60 - 19 La Rochelle
Montpellier 20 - 17 GrenobleMontpellier vs Grenoble Report
Bayonne 38 - 12 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Blue Bulls 30 - 25 Eastern Province KingsBlue Bulls vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Western Province 27 - 14 LionsWestern Province vs Lions Report
Sharks 19 - 16 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Northland 35 - 5 WellingtonNorthland vs Wellington Report
Counties Manukau 29 - 25 OtagoCounties Manukau vs Otago Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 22
Toulouse 35 - 6 CastresToulouse vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Pumas 33 - 15 GriquasPumas vs Griquas Report
More Currie Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00