Tandy settling in to Scotland

Tandy settling in to Scotland

The work of recently-appointed Assistant Coach Steve Tandy was put to the test for the first time in Scotland's opening round defeat to Ireland in Dublin, in which the visitors conceded one try.

The Welshman began working with the squad for the first time last month, with the past fortnight’s preparations – including an overseas camp in Spain and the round one Test-week – his first chance to work directly with the group and impart his own style and philosophy.

“The players have been great in fairness, in probably six sessions to do it,” said Tandy, talking about putting his own stamp on the national team defence.

“They’ve bought in to it and asked a lot of good questions. They’re a pleasure to work with and I feel lucky to be a part of this group.”

Scotland made a robust account for themselves against Ireland in a brutally physical contest, ultimately coming away with the losing bonus point (19-12).

‘Stay in the fight’ was the mantra for the week and the side certainly did that, however a number of opportunities to inflict a second home defeat for the Irishmen in a five-year spell went agonisingly close on a number of occasions.

“It was a good base against Ireland but there’s still lots to improve on,” he added.

“Conceding a try is disappointing but for the majority of the game they were outstanding. It’ll be a huge challenge playing England, the World Cup finalists, off the back of a defeat [England lost to France in Paris yesterday].

“They bring that physical edge. They’ve got players who can break a line, something we know we’re going to have to go up another couple of levels for at the weekend.

“But it’s more about where we want to be at the weekend. You can take your eye off and concentrate too much on the opposition.

“For us at the minute it’s about how we want to defend and what we want to represent in our defence.”

Tandy was speaking after the national team confirmed the 37-man Scotland squad for the round two Test against England this Saturday at BT Murrayfield.

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