Scotland player ratings: Kyle Steyn the star in nail-biting defeat to France

David Skippers
Scotland winger Kyle Steyn scores in the Rugby World Cup warm-up loss to france in Saint-Etienne

Scotland winger Kyle Steyn was the man of the match in losing effort against France.

Following their 30-27 loss to France in their Rugby World Cup warm-up clash in Saint-Etienne on Saturday, here’s the player ratings for Scotland.

15 Blair Kinghorn: He looked dangerous on attack during the early stages and did brilliantly to set up Kyle Steyn for the opening try with an excellent pass. Continued to impress in that department during the rest of the match, with his booming boot coming in handy when kicking for touch. 8

14 Kyle Steyn: The 29-year-old was one of Scotland’s star performers as he caught the eye with a superb all-round performance. Put his body on the line in defence and also showed off his excellent finishing skills with two well-taken tries. 9

13 Huw Jones: Tested Les Bleus’ defence with some fine attacking runs and also caught the eye with his distribution skills. There were some errors in judgement, however, like a direct kick into touch in the second half when he had players on his outside, although overall, it was a good display. 7

12 Sione Tuipulotu: Not his best performance, but he toiled manfully on attack and defence, while his more flashier team-mates kept the home side’s defence busy. 6

11 Duhan van der Merwe: As usual, the South African-born flyer was a real threat with ball in hand as he was in the thick of the action with some strong carries. He finished with 78 metres gained from 11 runs which included three clean breaks, six defenders beaten and a try for his efforts. 8

10 Finn Russell: The talented playmaker kept the home side’s defence honest with his vast array of skills and was especially influential during the opening half. He varied his play well during that period and continued to test Les Bleus’ defence with some clever moves as the match progressed. 8

9 Ali Price: Like the rest of the Scotland team, the 30-year-old made a bright start, but he was yellow carded in the 31st minute after not retreating when France played quickly from a penalty. 6

8 Jack Dempsey: Came to the fore with a dynamic attacking performance as he took the fight to Les Bleus. The former Wallaby kept the defence busy with several powerful carries and finished with a match-high 88 metres gained from 14 runs. 8

7 Rory Darge: The young tearaway continues to grow at this level, and he caught the eye with a strong all-round showing. Darge scored a try at a crucial stage of the match, and was at the forefront of Scotland’s defensive efforts as he finished with a team-high 11 tackles made, without missing one, and also made his presence felt at the breakdowns. 8

6 Jamie Ritchie: The Scotland skipper returned to the international arena and will be happy with his effort in an 80-minute performance. Impressed with his calm leadership when his side were struggling during the early stages of the second half and he shone at the breakdown. 7

5 Grant Gilchrist: The 33-year-old did what was expected of him, especially at the lineouts, but hardly set the world alight before he was replaced by Sam Skinner midway through the second half. 6

4 Richie Gray: Like his second-row partner Gilchrist, the veteran lock did well in the lineouts and put his body on the line in defence but was eventually replaced by Scott Cummings in the 65th minute. 6

3 WP Nel: The veteran front-row held his own in the scrums and also did well in the execution of his other core duties before being replaced by Javan Sebastian in the 56th minute. 7

2 George Turner: Was solid in the tight phases but not prominent in other areas, and it wasn’t a surprise when he was yanked off after 56 minutes with Stuart McInally coming on in his place. 6

1 Pierre Schoeman: The burly front-row conceded some penalties in the scrums but apart from that, he worked tirelessly in other areas. Finished with 16 metres gained from eight carries. 6

Replacements: Scotland went through a dip during the early stages of the second half and were trailing their hosts by 17 points by the 46th minute, but they came back strongly after making some changes shortly after that. Some of those changes worked as the likes of George Horne, Ollie Smith, and Sam Skinner were heavily involved, and they nearly clinched a last-gasp win. 7

READ MORE: Plucky France edge valiant Scotland in see-saw Rugby World Cup warm-up