‘Scotland disappointed for the right reasons’

Mark Bennett: Hamstring injury. Picture: SNS/SRU

Mark Bennett: Hamstring injury. Picture: SNS/SRU

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SCOTLAND winger Tommy Seymour believes Saturday’s 24-16 defeat by New Zealand was a missed opportunity for his team, but insisted afterwards it was “good to be disappointed for the right reason”.

The home side were a point behind the All Blacks, whom they have never beaten, with ten minutes to play, when captain Greig Laidlaw missed a penalty. The visitors then ensured victory with a late try. But Seymour insisted that, with a match against Tonga coming up on Saturday, he and his team-mates have no time to fret about what might have been.

“We had the penalty opportunity to go in front, but there’s no point being disgruntled about that,” said the Glasgow back, who scored an interception try for the second week running, “Greig has been slightly short of immaculate off the tee in the last two games so he was very unlucky.

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“We had opportunities and, unfortunately, it didn’t come off for us, but we can be proud in what we’ve done and it’s in a way good to be disappointed for the right reasons and not because we didn’t go out and perform or we failed to play. We did so many things right and put ourselves in a position where we could have done more.

“There were points where, if the pendulum had swung slightly in our favour, I could be sitting here having a whole different conversation, and that is pleasing and disappointing.

“All the guys would say there was an opportunity there to do something that hadn’t been done and it slipped through our fingers, but that’s what you get when you play the best team in the world.”

Centre Mark Bennett will miss the Tonga match after going off in the first half on Saturday with a hamstring injury. The Scotland medical team will monitor a number of other players before deciding whether they can be involved. They include Alasdair Dickinson, who has a lower leg injury, Alex Dunbar (ankle), Adam Ashe and Blair Cowan (both neck strain), Richie Gray and Ross Ford (both shoulder), Seymour and Laidlaw (both hand) and Euan Murray (groin).

“We’ll sit down and talk things through and make a decision, probably later in the week depending on how the players recover,” said Scotland head coach Vern Cotter.

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