Chris Harris warns Scotland will need to ‘raise everything’ against the All Blacks

Chris Harris believes Scotland will need to “raise everything” if they are to have a chance of beating New Zealand at Murrayfield on Sunday.

Chris Harris helped Scotland beat Fiji 28-12 but warned a big improvement will be needed against the All Blacks.  (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
Chris Harris helped Scotland beat Fiji 28-12 but warned a big improvement will be needed against the All Blacks. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

Gregor Townsend’s side laboured to a 28-12 win over Fiji last weekend after narrowly losing their autumn opener to Australia. The match against the All Blacks represents the toughest test by far of the series and Harris has called on Scotland to be more on point both physically and mentally. The Gloucester centre has never played New Zealand before and a win over the three-time World Cup winners would represent a career high but he knows a big improvement is required.

“We need to raise everything,” said Harris. “We got beat against Australia although we did enough to probably win. The first half against Fiji was pretty poor but we were much better in the second half. It has been inconsistent and we have to ramp up our intensity and our energy to stand a chance against the All Blacks.

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“It would be quality to play against them. I think they are the only top tier nation I’ve not played against. It is a challenge I am excited about because I want to test myself and see how I go against some of the best players in the world. This would be one of my favourite wins. But it is not just going to happen. It would be amazing to beat the All Blacks but we have to focus on the game not the win. The win would come off the back of a decent performance.”

Ireland proved in the summer that New Zealand were not invincible, beating them twice to claim an historic series win. The All Blacks then lost to Argentina and South Africa in the Rugby Championship to increase the pressure on head coach Ian Foster but they bounced back with consecutive wins against Australia to clinch the title. They have since beaten Japan in Tokyo and Wales in Cardiff and Harris dismissed suggestions they are on the wane.

“I haven’t written them off,” he said. “It would be a bit naive to write the All Blacks off, especially after them putting 50 points on Wales last week. If we don’t turn up on the day it will be a pretty hard day at the office.”

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