Paterson: Australia looking strong ahead of Autumn Nations Series
Ahead of a mouth-watering Autumn Nations series, featuring three Rugby Championship sides, Argentina beat the All Blacks in New Zealand for the first time, running out 25-18 winners, whilst Australia secured a second win of the tournament as they beat South Africa 25-17.
Scotland will play Australia, New Zealand and Argentina at BT Murrayfield this autumn, with Fiji completing the line-up of matches, with the All Blacks clash already sold out.
Los Pumas climbed to the top of the Rugby Championship table with their win in Christchurch.
Speaking on this week’s Official Scottish Rugby Podcast, Chris Paterson marvelled in the defensive foundations that Argentina built on to secure their win, as well as just how close the standards of international teams currently are.
He said: “We’re talking about games being won and lost on fine margins.
“The international game at the moment, you can get quite a big result having almost no difference between the standard of players, the momentum changes with one instance on the field or one example of a piece of brilliance or a mistake, so it’s so finely balanced.
“But I think to be honest, for Argentina that game against New Zealand was quite obviously won on defence and their attitude, whereas I think the game they won against us in the third test was won on attack.
“They were smart in attack, pushed to force that offload, to get that second touch, to funnel through the support channels.
“So they’re building their all round game.
“I know they’re here in November again, as are Australia, as are New Zealand, so Gregor and his staff will be watching these games closely with that in mind, as well as looking at individuals ahead of World Cup year.”
Scotland’s first opponents in the Autumn, Australia, sit second in the table after their win at home against South Africa.
And Chris said Australia are building nicely as the contest nears.
He said: “I’ve been impressed by Australia for quite a while.
“Looking ahead to the November tests, I see Australia being a real threat, and I know we’ve got a brilliant record here against them in recent years.
“Knowing Dave Rennie and how he likes to approach games attack minded, and some of the individual power units they have trying to play that fast, abrasive game that Dave likes, I think it’s coming together really well.
“So I think Australia are looking really, really good.”