Analysing Scotland's defeat in Rome
What did you think of the Italy v Scotland game?
Once upon a time it was thumbs up for survival in the Colosseum, thumbs down for death. Now, I am a realist and I know that rugby is not life and death, but that was painful to watch.
I am sitting in Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, but let's go through this bit by bit.
Scrums. With Euan Murray and Chunk (Allen) Jacobsen on the pitch Scotland had supremacy. My understanding is that Murray was injured, but he did well and both props earned their corn with Jacobsen my man of the match.
Matias Aguero of Italy is held up by Scotland's Dan Parks at the Stadio Flaminio. Photograph: Getty
Line-outs. Again, fine. There was a steady stream of possession there.
Loose. Bizarrely, this was the problem area. I love players who do so much that they become "isolated" because I never think it's their fault.
If a player gets isolated it's because the supporting players aren't getting to him. It was scary the number of times players would make breaks, or I remember one specific occasion when John Barclay took a ball over the top of a line-out, and it seemed to me that other players were thinking a couple of phases ahead instead of just getting stuck in to that breakdown.
And to keep the theme going of analysing the loose play, it was interesting that Scottish players went to ground quite quickly in contact and lost the ball in good Italian tackles.
Dan Parks has a difficult job. All the traffic must go through him and he is charged with passing the ball to one of possibly four receivers and, not only is it a tricky pass to give, it's tricky to take as well. But Parks did well.
Just in front of us one of the post-match scenes to remember was Alessandro Troncon, the former Italian scrum-half, celebrating like a mad thing in the stand only to be whacked on the head by Nick Mallett.
The Italians were desperate for the win and it meant so much to them.
I'll write more about the game when I get back to Glasgow but time is running out. Got to get the plane.
Here's what I thought, though. Disappointing, problems in contact, good scrum, could have won it as we had pressure that wasn't converted, started off too risky and made some early mistake that got the nerves going, and it's now played seven in Rome, and won just two.