Scotland lose forward Wilson for rest of Six Nations

Scotland lose forward Wilson for rest of Six Nations

In the second we took the foot off the gas, allowed them into the game and they took control.

With Best's Ulster team-mate Jacob Stockdale among the scorers, Ireland bounced back from their harrowing loss to England in Dublin that opened the Championship but, while Best said the side were more like themselves, the hooker does not yet feel that they hit the high watermark of previous year.

"We restricted them to an intercept try and it was a massive defensive effort".

However, it was the Irish who emerged victorious in the second half after another intense 40 minutes of rugby with points harder to come by for both teams.

"We have three of the toughest games to come", said the former Glasgow player of games against France, Wales and England.

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His coach Gregor Townsend took responsibility, saying Scotland had to improve their set-pieces.

"There was definitely a rise in temperature, an increase in energy", said Schmidt.

They also lost key man Stuart Hogg to injury and fell further behind to a wonderful try by Ireland's star wing Jacob Stockdale, the result of a stunning strike move no doubt meticulously planned by Schmidt. He was hailed down by the retreating Keith Earls but smartly popped a pass for Johnson to run in for the try, Laidlaw converting.

Scotland will meet Ireland in their opening Rugby World Cup Pool A game in Yokohama, Japan on Sept 22, with the victor in that fixture likely to top the group and avoid a possible quarterfinal with defending champions New Zealand.

But Jones fumbled a restart from Jonny Sexton that looked to be going out on the full, and Ireland had their first foothold, although initially the Scots seemed to repulse them and won turnover possession. In the couple of minutes leading up to the break, there was a period of play that saw Scotland go through 25 phases deep inside Irish territory without scoring a single point. Scottish hooker Stuart McInally denied his team was demoralized to still go in behind, but admitted they were "knackered" in the second half. "We pushed a good team all the way but we can play better". Russell asked. "What changed?" "We probably should have scored one try more and I'm frustrated that we gifted them a try, but I am very happy with the way we played in the first half, ' said the Scotland head coach. If we're going to progress we need to start winning these games".