Ruaridh Jackson admits Scotland under-performed

Ruaridh Jackson: Frustrated by defeat. Picture: SNS
Ruaridh Jackson: Frustrated by defeat. Picture: SNS
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STAND-OFF Ruaridh Jackson admitted Scotland had under-performed and been left angry and frustrated with a lot to think about before facing Australia on Saturday.

“The guys are disappointed and pretty upset in the dressing-room,” said the Glasgow No 10 after yesterday’s dispiriting 28-0 loss to the Springboks.

“The nature of the loss is frustrating but we did play some good stuff and we know it was against one of the best sides in the world who have just come off a championship where we have seen them run the All Blacks so close. We just need to dust ourselves down and get ready for what comes next.

“The loss was a tough one to take but they are a quality team. We gave them a few chances and they took them in a very clinical fashion. They were very physical, took two well-executed driving lineouts and then showed the pace and the skill of their backs to score tries from deep. It is frustrating because we did have our chances during the game and didn’t take them, and that was the difference.”

There was less than five minutes on the clock when Willem Alberts ran off a line-out to barge the Boks ahead while Jackson was negligent as he popped a misplaced pass into the grasp of Willie Le Roux, allowing the full-back to dart in the for the try from halfway.

Le Roux then made the most of another Scottish error from the restart to boot a clever kick across field for JP Pietersen to slide over in the corner, while another Jackson mistake killed of a promising Scottish move and saw them driven back 70 yards before conceding again from another line-out drive, this time with prop Coenie Oosthuizen scoring.

“It seemed to be one of those days when nothing goes right for us,” rued Jackson.

“Whenever we did get into good areas we would make silly mistakes, knock the ball on or kick at the wrong time or get turned over.

“It’s a sad fact that we didn’t get close enough to attempt a single place kick. I suppose it tells us about South African discipline but to not have any place kicks in a match is a pretty strange occurrence.

“The truth is they were dominant at the breakdown and slowed our ball down really efficiently.

“It gives us a lot to think about and work on in the run up to the Australia game this weekend. There are plenty
of things we will need to tighten up on.

“Even after three tries in the first half we never lost sight of the fact that we wanted to win the game, but playing when you are 20 points down is extremely hard. Their standards are so high and they are a tough team to break down.”

South Africa are due to face the Scots in the pool stage of the 2015 World Cup when it is staged south of the border.

JP Pietersen led the Springbok team out of the tunnel to mark is 50th cap on the wing, and then went on to score his side’s third try in the first half when Scotland were in danger of being over-run.

“We definitely stepped up from last week and are building momentum as we now get ready to face France this weekend,” he said.

“I think some of our play was outstanding, also our discipline, and it was very pleasing to keep Scotland to no points at all.

“We did not underestimate Scotland and they came out and gave us a good game. They just made a lot of mistakes, knocked on a lot of ball and sometimes were unlucky in missing their kicks to touch.

“It was good to start a Test match so well, scoring a try and then another three before sticking to our defence and keeping them at bay.

“Scotland were very physical. They were hard at the breakdown and made it messy for us but they could not stop us.”