Scotland

Johnson: Scots can top Boks

Wed, 05 Dec 2012 16:22
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We can take the scalps of the big teams
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Scotland attacking coach Scott Johnson believes they can finish atop their top ahead of the Springboks at the 2015 World Cup.

The Scots have been drawn with South Africa and Samoa in Pool B with Japan and either Canada or the United States likely to complete the group.

Scotland have won just five of their 22 encounters against the Springboks but Johnson, a candidate for the head coaching role vacated by Andy Robinson following Scotland’s shock 21-15 loss to Tonga last month, is confident that they can win their pool.

“We’ve shown form in the last few years that proves we can take the scalps of the big teams,” Johnson told scotsman.com

“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.

“The fact is if we get our parts completely right, we’ll take on anyone on any given day. That’s what we’re aiming to do."

The winner of Pool B will face the runners-up of Pool A - comprising hosts England, Australia, Wales and two qualifying teams - in the quarterfinals of the 2015 tournament.

Springbok captain Jean de Villiers, who led his team to a 21-10 win over Scotland at Murrayfield last month, noted that the Scots would provide a stern challenge.

“Being used to the conditions definitely gives Scotland an advantage,” said De Villiers.

“It’s not too far from home for them so they’ll have a lot of support. We’ve had Samoa in every World Cup we’ve played. That will be another tough one.

“World rugby is getting closer and closer together and the guys are getting more competitive so by the time we hit 2015 it will be a great show for world rugby.”

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