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Sunday, 24 November, 2002, 17:17 GMT
Scotland on target for World Cup?
Fiji run Scotland close in a hard-fought encounter at Murrayfield but Andy Craig's hat-trick of tries secures a 36-22 win.
Can Scotland be pleased with their autumn's work?
This debate is now closed.
Orrell's Andy Craig claimed a hat-trick of tries to spare Scotland's blushes in an untidy encounter at Murrayfield.
The home side succeeded in securing an autumn Test clean sweep, but they never rose to the heights they achieved against South Africa last weekend.
Are you pleased with Scotland's autumn showing?
I thought today's match against Fiji was abysmal. If this is the best they can do they should stay out of the Six Nations. It's a good job Italy are worse as that may be the only thing to stop Scotland getting the wooden spoon. Where is the pride in playing for your country?
Awful. We won but honestly, this has to be Gregor Townend's last stand. The strength of this team is a superb front five, not Gregor running around like an idiot.
Some encouraging signs from Scotland, which must be due to Jim Telfer's input. McGeechan is still the wrong man for the team and he represents the past. A new coach could do a lot with this group of players. Kenny McCracken?
It was a return to form for Scotland yesterday - loads of handling errors and a lack of urgency in the backs. If you watch other teams - especially Ireland and England - their backs hit the ball running.
The Scottish pack is in excellent shape but there's no point in them putting in a good shift if the backs then don't do anything with it and yesterday they looked very static and predictable.
The "mercurial" Gregor Townsend also had an off day. Keep him as a super sub. After South Africa, I was looking forward to the Six Nations - now I think we'll toil against France and Ireland and get a roasting from England. Hopefully they'll prove me wrong!
Scottish rugby has taken a step forward so far this season, with both the pro teams and now the national side winning games regularly. Our player base has been strengthened, and our forwards are returning to the rucking game which has served us so well for years.
However, just as a few defeats didn't make us a bad team, a few wins doesn't make us world-beaters. The World Cup is everybody's focus, but we need to build on this autumn in the Championship first. Solid home wins backed up by competitive displays away from home are required next.
The best thing to emerge from this series has been the forward pack. Telfer's influence is clear, and with Redpath (a world-class scrum-half) and Ross we have two clear-headed half-backs to take advantage of it. Ross should now get a run in the side, as teams he plays in tend to win.
I think we should be pleased with the performances over the three games. We used to be dire in the autumn internationals but this year we have made definite progress.
Whether that progress is rapid enough to reduce the gap between ourselves and the other top nations is a matter for conjecture but it is good to see positive signs where until recently there were precious few.
It's been a great Test series for us, and the South Africa game was a highlight, regardless of what people say about their side.
However, Scotland still have the ability to make their fans nervous, as we saw yesterday. We needed to find some young new talent, and it looks as if we might have done just that.
Hopefully we now have the confidence we need going into the Six Nations, although winning it may not be on the cards quite yet.
Scotland can be great on their day. However, they are a long way short of the current big three of England, Australia and New Zealand and probably still below France and Ireland at present.
More playing resources, a reliable kicker and a bigger pack are still required if Scotland are ever to challenge at the top of the game. Over a gruelling World Cup campaign, their lack of power up front and their failure to convert points from the boot will see them struggle to get beyond the quarter-finals.
I thought Scotland did really well to beat the Springboks, and proved that when they want to, they can move up a gear and compete with the best. However, the opposite of this was shown when they played Romania and Fiji.
They seemed to slip into complacency and make loads of errors, and as soon as McGeechan sorts out that wee problem, Scotland could pretty much beat anyone!
Although a Scotsman living in South Africa for 33 years, I am still a Scotsman and the boys did us proud last week against the Springboks. Even though we can't realistically say the two tries were scored, take them away and we still beat them on penalties, aside from the excellent game play shown by the entire team.
The important thing was winning against South Africa, who are good no matter how bad they are by their own standards. Against the Fijians, Scotland were never going to reproduce the form of the previous week.
But it's all part of the Scottish plan - to make themselves look bad then suddenly come to life when it really matters. At the moment they look as if they're well equipped to do that in the Six Nations.
Then we'll have an idea of how well they will do in the World Cup. I don't know if it's a good or bad thing, but Scotland are the most bewildering team in world rugby.
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