Berliner Boersenzeitung - McInally adamant Scots still in Six Nations hunt after new Cardiff blow

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McInally adamant Scots still in Six Nations hunt after new Cardiff blow
McInally adamant Scots still in Six Nations hunt after new Cardiff blow

McInally adamant Scots still in Six Nations hunt after new Cardiff blow

Stuart McInally has insisted Scotland remain contenders for the Six Nations Championship title despite seeing their long wait for a win in Cardiff continue with a 20-17 defeat by Wales on Saturday.

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Although Scotland won in the western town of Llanelli two years ago, in a behind closed doors match due to Covid restrictions, Dan Biggar's late drop-goal condemned the Dark Blues to an 11th successive Test loss to Wales in the Welsh capital.

It is now 20 years since Scotland last beat Wales in Cardiff, with this latest reverse coming just a week after they launched their Six Nations campaign with a Calcutta Cup win over arch-rivals England at Murrayfield.

Scotland next face France, the only unbeaten side in the Championship after two rounds, in Edinburgh on February 26.

"The initial feeling after a loss is devastation and disappointment, you want to deliver for the group and for the people of Scotland," said Edinburgh hooker McInally.

"You saw last week how it important it was for the whole of Scotland when you get the win.

"It's disappointing, but the Championship's still wide open," he added. "We've got France at home next and we'll go into that full of belief. We've had some good results over them recently and we can't wait to move on."

Reigning champions Wales had seen their title defence start in dispiriting fashion with a comprehensive 29-7 defeat by Ireland at Dublin's Lansdowne Road.

But Scotland were unable to take charge in Cardiff, despite some promising moments with Wales captain Biggar, who also kicked four penalties, punishing their indiscipline in what was the Wales fly-half's 100th international appearance.

"It wasn't good enough," said McInally. "The referee's arm was going out too quick.

"We weren't disciplined enough around the breakdown. Ultimately we stopped tries, but they were just kicking three points and keeping that scoreboard ticking.

"We couldn't get away from them and they were better than us. We were buzzing on the back of last week. But It's a long time since we've won here and we were under no illusion how hard it was going to be."

He added: "Although we give a lot of credit to Wales for playing well and seeing that game out, we really feel we were sub-par.

"We know the opportunity we've missed. It's heart-breaking."

(P.Werner--BBZ)