Tim Visser: '˜George North is a bit of a freak of nature'

Tim Visser isn't the type to fret about what is coming down the track but even someone of his impressive physique must have a healthy respect for his opposite number today.

Scotland's Tim Visser trains ahead of the match versus Wales. Picture: Ross Parker/SNS/SRU
Scotland's Tim Visser trains ahead of the match versus Wales. Picture: Ross Parker/SNS/SRU

When he isn’t recovering from various head injuries he has suffered over the years, strapping Welsh flyer George North is one of the most impressive sights in world rugby. It was his late try that won it for Wales 12 months ago in Cardiff and if anyone can pre-book his passage to New Zealand in the summer, then North is surely among them.

Scotland’s favourite Dutchman is tasked with stopping him and, when quizzed about the man he marks today, Visser sounds like Will Carling referencing the giant Jonah Lomu back in 1995.

“George is a big, physical guy,” said the Scot. “A bit of a freak of nature to be honest. He’s an established international and Lions player and we all know what he is going to bring.

“Personally, it is more about trying to fill the gap that Sean [Maitland] has left. He played well in the last couple of games, especially defensively, so that is something I want to make sure I bring to the game.”

Maitland’s defensive reading of the game against Ireland saved two slam dunk scores, whereas his replacement is more impressive with than without the ball.

Harlequins wing Visser, pictured, knows North from his five seasons with Edinburgh, when the Welshman was at Scarlets, but has yet to stand toe to toe with the Northampton man in the Premiership. While Wales may boast an edge across the park the Scots have the raucous backing of an enthusiastic crowd who are daring to believe.

“We love playing in front of our own supporters. There will be thousands of Scots going for it tomorrow and we are looking forward to that and hopefully Wales are not,” said Visser. “I remember sitting here in this press conference last year at this time against France and it was a similar story, ten years [since we’d won], but we beat them. I’m the eternal optimist but it’s going to be a tough game.”