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Page last updated at 18:26 GMT, Sunday, 8 February 2009
2009 Six Nations
7 Feb-21 March

BBC coverage | 606 | Official site

Scotland head coach Frank Hadden
Frank Hadden said his battered troops took too long to find form

Scotland head coach Frank Hadden admitted his side were caught cold by Wales in their bruising 26-13 defeat in the Six Nations opener at Murrayfield.

"Obviously, we knew we were playing the best side in the northern hemisphere," Hadden told BBC Scotland.

"But it's disappointing that we allowed them to show what a good side they are.

"We were going to come strong at one stage, but it took us too long to get going. We've got a huge challenge next week against France."

Much of the damage was inflicted in an unforgiving eight-minute spell in the first half, when Wales claimed two of their four tries via Tom Shanklin and Alun Wyn Jones, with Scotland reduced to 14 men.

"I felt that we didn't get going at the start," said Hadden.

"Then when we did seem to get going, the two guys who really led by example - Simon Webster and Geoff Cross - went off injured as a result of their efforts.

"And then when Geoff was sin-binned we were down to 14 men. Wales, like the top quality side they are, took full advantage of that and scored two tries.

"From there on it was an uphill struggle. But the killer blow came just after half-time."

Chris Paterson and try-scorer Max Evans gave Scotland a much-needed cutting edge when they came on at Murrayfield, but they could not fashion a dramatic late comeback.

Max Evans scores Scotland's solitary try
Try scorer Max Evans provided a spark for the hosts at Murrayfield

"We knew we had impact coming off the bench and it was disappointing we left them with such a mountain to climb," added Hadden.

"We had hoped that they would come on, give the boys a lift and take us home. But they had too much to do when they came on. There's no doubt that a couple of them put their hands up."

Looking ahead to facing the French in Paris next Saturday, Hadden added: "A six-day turnaround is a really tough thing in international rugby. Plus we've got some travel time in there.


"But we knew what was coming and we've made our plans already. What we have to do now is to assess the injury situation and look very carefully at selection."

Scotland flanker Ally Hogg said the side were disappointed with their display at Murrayfield.

"It was pretty disappointing," he said. "We didn't really show what we had in the first half. And Wales getting that try just after half-time really knocked us.

"But we finished strongly and that's what we need to build on for next week.

"We didn't win the collisions from the start and we were really struggling to get beyond one phase. It's disappointing and something we'll have to look at this week."

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see also
Former players doubt Scotland XV
08 Feb 09 |  Scottish
Gatland vows Wales will improve
08 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland 13-26 Wales
08 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland v Wales as it happened
08 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland v Wales photos
08 Feb 09 |  Rugby Union
Scotland v Wales match stats
31 Jan 08 |  Rugby Union
Six Nations guide 2009 - Scotland
28 Jan 09 |  Rugby Union

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