Rugby: Bullish Johnson believes Scots can hold their own in 2015 RWC group

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Scott JOHNSON believes Scotland are capable of topping their group at the 2015 World Cup after being drawn alongside South Africa and Samoa.

The Scots, who are seeking a new coach after Andy Robinson stepped down in the wake of last month’s defeat to Tonga, are the lowest-ranked team of the named trio, with Japan and Canada likely to complete a tricky Pool B.

Johnson, Scotland’s attack coach and a contender to succeed Robinson, insists his side can humble the Springboks if they play to their potential. “We’ve shown form in the last few years that proves we can take the scalps of the big teams,” he said.

“Trying to determine what theirs or our side will look like in three years time is like determining how big, fat and ugly I’ll be in three years’ time, which isn’t easy. If we get our parts completely right, we’ll take on anyone on any given day. That’s what we’re aiming to do.”

With South Africa expected to top Pool B, Scotland and Samoa will battle it out for the runners-up spot with Australia, England or Wales waiting in the quarter-finals.

Pool A: Australia, England, Wales, Oceania 1, Repechage winner.

Pool B: South Africa, Samoa, Scotland, Asia 1, Americas 2.

Pool C: New Zealand, Argentina, Tonga, Europe 1, Africa 1

Pool D: France, Ireland, Italy, Americas 1, Europe 2.