Christine Lester assesses the individual Scottish performances in the defeat at the Stade de France on Saturday.
Hugo Southwell – 5
Reasonably steady at the back, made some good tackles. Overall not a noteworthy performance from the Stade Francais full back.
Nikki Walker – 6
A solid effort from Walker but there is still room for him to be better. Missed several tackles on the wing, and there were errors with his offload that led to the on form French side regaining possession.
Jo Ansbro – 9
Fantastic display from Ansbro. Absolutely determined to break through the French line and shake them up, was crucial in support at the back and set up Lamont for the third Scottish try. A definite stand-out performance from the Saints player.
Nick de Luca – 5
Another reasonable, if uninspiring performance. Allowed the ball to be turned over far too easily in the opening minutes of the game inviting Rougerie to set up Medard for the first French try. Replaced by Sean Lamont 55 minutes in.
Max Evans – 7
A spirited effort from Evans, like Ansbro, he was determined to break through the French line, without Ansbro’s success. When given the space to play he performed well, however had very little opportunity to really display what he is capable of.
Dan Parks – 8
Another good performance from Parks, let down only by some risky passing. Kicked 3 conversions from 3 attempts, and was very strategic with his other kicks. Made several excellent tackles, and brilliantly intercepted a loose French pass taking back the ball for Scotland. Replaced by Ruaridh Jackson in the 68th minute.
Rory Lawson – 6
A cogent display from Lawson, he worked with what he was given. However there was no real stand-out moment from him during play. Replaced at half time by Mike Blair
Allan Jacobson – 7
As a forward this match was always going to be tough when facing the coordination and power of the French pack. But Jacobson handled himself well, becoming a key cog in the pack despite being slightly let down in the scrum by those behind him.
Ross Ford – 6
Another player who took the brunt of the French scrum, coped well under the pressure and driving force of the opposition, but was undoubtedly in the second best front row. Replaced by Dougie Hall after 73 minutes played.
Euan Murray – 5
Seemed to be a focal point for the collapsing scrums, and was penalised 3 times in rapid succession. Murray is normally a rock at tight head, but was coming close to receiving a yellow card in the scrum leading to France’s penalty try. Replaced by Moray Low after 70 minutes
Richie Gray – 9
Quite simply, brilliant. Appeared to be everywhere on the pitch, and made a crucial tackle on Rougerie, stopping a French try. Powerful and relatively fearless in his attacks, he definitely made his mark upon Les Bleus, and worked well with Kellock at number 5.
Alastair Kellock – 8
Led the team with confidence and by example. Good strategic play allowed him to cross the line for Scotland’s first try, and Kellock’s first try for his country. Took some big hits from the opposition. Conceded a penalty, but kept his morale and the morale of his team up. An encouraging performance from the captain.
Nathan Hines – 6
Appeared to be having issues with his shoulder at several moments throughout the game. When playing at blind side had very little impact. In the scrum that led to the penalty try did not appear to be giving the front row the support they needed. More effective in the second half before being replaced by Richie Vernon in the 55th minute.
John Barclay – 5
Another player who was not using his weight in the scrum. Although the heavier pack, the Scots lacked the cohesion that the French had, and Barclay with his attention more focused on any attempt by the French to make a quick dash than providing support was possibly key to failure of the Scottish scrum. Replaced by Ross Rennie 61 minutes in.
Kelly Brown – 7
Yes, Brown did score Scotland’s second try, but he was another player with his head up in THAT scrum as opposed to using his own substantial bulk to drive the French back. Made a few mistakes in his passing, but made up for those with his commitment in defence.
Subbed at 72mins for Ross Ford. No moments of note in the dying minutes.
Brought on for Euan Murray 70mins in. Made very little difference to the scrum.
Started playing 55 minutes in. Contributed some excellent passes, but other than that, little else.
Subbed 61mins in, for John Barclay. Attention was more on using his weight in the scrums to effect than Barclay’s had been.
Brought on at half time for Lawson. Again did well with what he was given, but nothing to make him stand out.
69minutes brought on for Dan Parks. Successfully kicked the third conversion.
Entered the pitch 55 minutes into the game. Scored the third try for Scotland, and attempted to break through the French defence with the ball in hand.