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Scotland ignoring ABs hype

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 3 days ago
Captain John Barclay insists his side must focus on themselves, nit the World Champions. © Getty Captain John Barclay insists his side must focus on themselves, nit the World Champions.

Don't expect too many glowing words about the All Blacks this week from Scotland captain John Barclay.

Scotland's winless Test history against New Zealand comes under the microscope again ahead of Saturday's match at Murrayfield but Barclay won't spend time dwelling on it.

Instead, he'll be advising his players to ignore the hype around the world champions and recognise they have shown chinks in 2017.

Despite conceding five tries in the 44-38 win over lower-ranked Samoa last weekend, Barclay believes his team should take confidence into a match against opponents who have lost two Tests and drawn another.

"If we sit back and are in awe and are inspired, then there's something quite drastically wrong with our mindset," Barclay said.

"We need to focus on ourselves as much as we can and try to impose ourselves.

"Yes we have to do a bit of homework, but if we sit back and talk about them and how fantastic they are, we have no chance."

While Scotland have been hit by injuries before and during their November Test campaign, they have shown depth and ability over the last 18 months.

The good work of their previous coach, New Zealander Vern Cotter, has been continued by Gregor Townsend, Barclay said.

"We can't just sit back and watch them, we have to go and play with an intent, be aggressive and try to impose ourselves on them," Barclay said.

"This weekend will be very hard; they don't lose many games but they have lost a few in the past 12 months."

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