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Allan Massie: Wounded England a daunting prospect
IRELAND have beaten England by ten points and France by seven. Scotland have lost three matches by a sum total of 13 points. Ireland are a team that knows how to win. Scotland one that doesn’t – not yet anyway. You might say this is a matter of experience, and Ireland certainly have a fair number of old hands. Yet though there are several young and inexperienced members of the Scotland XV, others – Sean Lamont, Greig Laidlaw, Euan Murray, Ross Ford, Alasdair Dickinson and Johnnie Beattie – have years of international experience, even if, sadly, it has mostly been experience of defeat. It’s perhaps relevant that when things went to pieces in the last ten minutes on Saturday, half of that group were off the field. When Laidlaw was replaced too, one wondered who was then supposed to be leading the team. 4
 

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Allan Massie: Wounded England a daunting prospect
IRELAND have beaten England by ten points and France by seven. Scotland have lost three matches by a sum total of 13 points. Ireland are a team that knows how to win. Scotland one that doesn’t – not yet anyway. You might say this is a matter of experience, and Ireland certainly have a fair number of old hands. Yet though there are several young and inexperienced members of the Scotland XV, others – Sean Lamont, Greig Laidlaw, Euan Murray, Ross Ford, Alasdair Dickinson and Johnnie Beattie – have years of international experience, even if, sadly, it has mostly been experience of defeat. It’s perhaps relevant that when things went to pieces in the last ten minutes on Saturday, half of that group were off the field. When Laidlaw was replaced too, one wondered who was then supposed to be leading the team. 4
 
 
 

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