Scotland player ratings: Huw Jones and Finn Russell shine in exhilarating Six Nations defeat to France

Jared Wright
Scotland fell to a 32-21 defeat to France in an enthralling Six Nations encounter. Here is how we rated Gregor Townsend's side. 

Scotland fell to a 32-21 defeat to France in an enthralling Six Nations encounter. Here is how we rated Gregor Townsend’s side. 

15 Stuart Hogg: A vastly improved performance from Hogg compared to his opening two Six Nations performances, but still not quite at his best. He wasted some good opportunities through poor decision-making and execution. 6

14 Kyle Steyn: Starved of the ball out wide with just six touches. He was caught ball-watching for France‘s opening try and replaced in the final quarter after a forgettable performance after two standouts. 5


13 Huw Jones: Another extraordinary performance from the in-form centre who beat six defenders, gained over 70 metres and scored two tries to keep his side in the game. Outstanding. 8

12 Sione Tuipulotu: Assisted Jones’ second try and was eager to shift the ball as Scotland attempted to spread the ball wide throughout the 80. He was wrapped up simply by the French defence when he took the ball to the line. 6

11 Duhan van der Merwe: France managed to keep the bulldozing winger quiet for most of the match. He made six carries but managed just nine metres and beat one defender. The French nullified his impact. 5

Fantastic Finn

10 Finn Russell: Flashes of mind-blowing brilliance and outrageous skills, but again that was paired with some silly mistakes and decisions. The former outweighed the latter, scoring a try, assisting another and nailing all three shots at goal. 8

9 Ben White: Continues to prove why he is currently Scotland’s starting scrum-half with sharp, accurate service to Russell. He denied Ethan Dumortier superbly in the last knockings of his performance too. 7

8 Matt Fagerson: He has defended astutely in the opening two games and continued in that fashion for the hour he was on the pitch. He struggled to gain the ascendancy with the ball in hand, and there was a significant step up when Jack Dempsey came on. 6

7 Hamish Watson: Lasted just 11 minutes on his return to the Scotland line-up as he was substituted following Grant Gilchrist’s red card. He had few opportunities to impress during that period but was flattened by Paul Willemse in the build-up to Romain Ntamack’s try. N/A

6 Jamie Ritchie: A big tackle count from the Scottish captain and proved to be a safe lineout option. He struggled to get much parity at the breakdown. He rubbed further salt in the wounds when his descent towards the referee lost Scots 10 metres, and Gael Fickou put the final nail in the coffin. 6

Grays step up after Gilchrist’s red

5 Grant Gilchrist: Sent off for a high and dangerous tackle on Anthony Jelonch from a kick-off. He could have easily done better, poor technique and poor execution. 2

4 Richie Gray: After Gilchrist’s sending off, he and his brother had to carry the responsibility at lineout time and did so superbly. He had a few nice touches with ball in hand, but his standout work was at the breakdown. 7

3 Zander Fagerson: Held his own at scrum time without dominating; in fact, there was a significant improvement with WP Nel on the tighthead. A quiet game around the park, too. 5

2 George Turner: A sound performance from the hooker with just the one hiccup at the lineout. He was immense when carrying the ball to the line and came incredibly close to scoring. 7

1 Pierre Schoeman: Extremely busy around the park, weighing in with seven tackles and 11 carries. The scrummaging honours were pretty much even with replacement prop Sipili Faletau. 7

Replacements: Scotland won the second half 10-14, with the bench playing a significant role in the improved second-half performance. The front row was excellent at scrum time, with the exception of the last set-piece, while Jonny Gray was another brilliant lineout jumper. Dempsey was bullish with ball in hand and Ali Price picked up from where White left off. 7

READ MORE: Six Nations: France end Scotland’s Grand Slam dreams as two sent off in Paris thriller