Greig Laidlaw: Scotland scrum-half calls for maturity against top nations

Greig Laidlaw playing for Scotland against Australia
Greig Laidlaw said the Scotland players were "upset with each other" after Saturday's defeat
Scotland v Argentina
Venue: Murrayfield Date: Saturday, 19 November Kick-off: 17:00 GMT
Coverage: Watch on BBC television, listen on BBC Radio Scotland and follow live text commentary on the BBC Sport website

Scotland scrum-half Greig Laidlaw says they must "grow up right throughout the team" to start winning tight matches against the top nations.

Vern Cotter's side were on course to beat Australia but succumbed to a late Tevita Kuridrani try on Saturday.

The result evoked memories of a late defeat by the same opponents in last year's World Cup quarter-finals.

"Everybody must understand what's working for us to make sure we get over the line," said Laidlaw.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Highlights: Scotland 22-23 Australia

The World Cup defeat was down to a combination of a botched Scotland line-out and a subsequent referring error.

Laidlaw says these losses are not the result of mental fragility in the squad, but a need to cut out basic errors and ill-discipline when the finishing line is in sight.

"We need to grow up right throughout the team, no matter if it's the young boys coming in or the most experienced players," he said.

"We just need to keep discipline in our shape in what we are trying to do and have confidence in each other to hold the ball.

"When we look back we feel it was probably in our control to go ahead and win the game [at Murrayfield on Saturday], so we're pretty upset with each other.

"I think Australia were running out of options. We just gave them penalties that allowed them to get field position and that's what hurt us."

Media playback is not supported on this device

Jones brilliance opens scoring for Scotland

One of the major positives to come out of the loss was how the new faces in the Scotland side fared. Centre Huw Jones scored two tries on his home debut and flanker Hamish Watson - making his first Scotland start - showed up well against the celebrated Wallabies back row.

"It's brilliant to see the strength in depth coming through now," added Laidlaw, who will leave Gloucester at the end of the season to join French side Claremont Auvergne.

"You look at [front-row duo] Zander Fagerson and Allan Dell, they both had fantastic games - both young players and arguably they are playing in the hardest position on the field. To hold up international scrums is a tough, tough job.

"It will be another tough job this weekend [against Argentina on Saturday].

"That's what you need: a healthy squad where there is competition for places. Nobody is safe within the squad. You know your performance needs to be good or there are players in and around that can step up and do a good job."

Top Stories