Everything you need to know about Scotland’s autumn Tests

Greig Laidlaw and Scotland will face Australia for the first time since the infamous World Cup quarter-final last year. Picture: Getty

Greig Laidlaw and Scotland will face Australia for the first time since the infamous World Cup quarter-final last year. Picture: Getty

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The Scotland national team will be back in action when the autumn Tests get underway each week. Here’s all you need to know about the three fixtures.

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MATCH ONE

Scotland v Australia (BT Murrayfield, Saturday 12 November, 2.30pm)

Referee: John Lacey (Ireland)

Tickets: Available at scottishrugby.org

TV: Live on BBC1

Head to head: Played 29, Scotland won 9, Australia won 20, drawn 0

Last meeting: Australia 35 Scotland 34 (2015 Rugby World Cup quarter-final, Twickenham, 18 October 2015)

Overview: Coach Michael Cheika’s Wallabies are currently ranked third in the World Rugby rankings to Scotland’s eighth.

Since 1998 the two nations have played for the Hopetoun Cup, which Scotland held from 2009 to 2013 after long-awaited success over the men in green and gold in two narrow victories - 9-8 at Murrayfield in November 2009 then a historic 9-6 win in Newcastle, New South Wales, in June 2012. The Wallabies regained the Hopetoun Cup with a 21-15 triumph in Edinburgh during the 2013 autumn Test series but it is the latest meeting between the two sides which sticks out in the memory - that titanic World Cup quarter-final at Twickenham, which Scotland seemed to have snatched for a seismic victory with Mark Bennett’s late try, only for South African referee Craig Joubert to intervene and award a controversial late penalty which broke Scottish hearts. Australia went on to reach the final and were competitive against eventual champions New Zealand.

Since then they have suffered heavy defeats to the All Blacks but enjoyed decent success against South Africa and Argentina in the southern hemisphere Rugby Championship. Not the force they were in 2015 but still potentially formidable.

Prediction: Australia win by 1-5 pts

MATCH TWO

Scotland v Argentina (BT Murrayfield, Saturday 19 November, kick-off 5pm)

Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)

Tickets: Available at scottishrugby.org

TV: Live on BBC2

Head to head: Played 15, Scotland won 6, Argentina won 9, drawn 0

Last meeting: Scotland 41 Argentina 31 (2014 Autumn Tests Series, BT Murrayfield, 8 November 2014)

Overview: Coach Daniel Hourcade’s Pumas are just one spot behind the Scots in the world rankings in ninth place.

The two nations have been playing each other since 1969 but the first officially recognised Test was at Murrayfield in 1990 when Scotland’s Grand Slammers won 49-3. The Argentines actually hold a winning record over the Scots but the men in dark blue have took five of the past seven encounters.

Since reaching the 2015 World Cup semi-finals - their second last-four appearance after doing the same in 2007 when they beat Scotland in the quarter-finals - the Pumas managed only one win in this year’s Rugby Championship.

Prediction: Scotland win by 10-15 pts

MATCH THREE

Scotland v Georgia (Rugby Park, Saturday 26 November, 2.30pm)

Referee: Matthew Carley (England)

Tickets: Available at scottishrugby.org

TV: Live on BBC1

Head to head: Played 1, Scotland won 1, Georgia won 0, drawn 0

Last meeting: Scotland 15 Georgia 6 (2011 Rugby World Cup Pool B, Invercargill, 14 September 2011)

Overview: The improving Georgians play a touring Test match in Scotland for the first time in what will be the second meeting between the teams. Georgia are currently ranked the 11 in the world, ahead of the likes of Japan, Italy and Samoa and won the European Nations Cup in March for the sixth consecutive year.

The team have just completed a successful tour of the Pacific Islands, beating Fiji and Tonga and drawing with Samoa, who they will meet in Tbilisi before the match in Kilmarnock.

The two nations have only met once before, at the 2011 Rugby World Cup, when the boot of stand-off Dan Parks brought about a 15-6 victory over a team that was coached by Scot Richie Dixon.

Prediction: Scotland win by 15-20 pts

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