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Player Ratings: Scotland

OPINION: Scotland’s dream of reaching the knockout stages of the Rugby World Cup was ended in brutal fashion by a rampant Ireland in Paris.

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Scotland were never at the races as a superb Ireland ran amock at the Stade de France.

Gregor Townsend’s side never came close to troubling the world’s number one team, who were 26-0 ahead at the break and cruising to victory.

It was a dismal night at the Stade de France as Scotland exit at the pool stage for the second successive World Cup.

Gavin Harper rates the Scottish players:

15. Blair Kinghorn – N/A
Forced off with a head injury after less than eight minutes on his 50th cap, from which he did not return.

14. Darcy Graham – 3
Could do nothing to stop the opener, and didn’t get any opportunities in attack. Forced off injured early in the second half.

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13. Huw Jones – 3
Preferred to Chris Harris for his superior attacking play, but how Scotland could’ve done with their defensive leader tonight. Made an excellent break for Price’s score.

12. Sione Tuipulotu – 4
A couple of decent carries early on when Scotland had some ball, and did well to put Ashman away, but otherwise wasn’t effective.

11. Duhan van der Merwe – 3
Too often his impact is mitigated in big games, and again tonight. Cut down and turned over with his first carry, then nearly held up with the second. Scotland found him with the clock in the red, then to sum up the evening, turned the ball over to mercifully put Scotland out their misery.

10. Finn Russell – 4
Scotland’s talisman totally unable to unpick a swarming Irish defence. He provided a couple of highlights on a dire night as he was completely outplayed by Sexton.

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9. Ali Price – 3
His recall over Ben White probably the headline selection, but he’s just nowhere near the form that won him a place on the 2021 Lions tour. Caught twice at the base of rucks inside the first 15 minutes, and a terrible defensive read as O’Mahony burst through. His second half – like the team’s – it was better, but was out on his feet late on.

1. Pierre Schoeman – 4
When Scotland did have the ball, he made inroads, but that was few and far between. Very lucky not to be penalised for pushing Sheehan over the advertising boards, and off not long after.

2. George Turner – 3
Good in the loose, but far too often the lineout malfunctions and tonight no different. Twice picked off by O’Mahony at the front.

3. Zander Fagerson – 3
Unable to help Gilchrist stop Ringrose in the opening minute, then bailed the second row out when he was isolated in attack.

4. Richie Gray – 3
At 34 he’s unlikely to be back at the World Cup, and he was emphatically outplayed by Beirne and Henderson.

5. Grant Gilchrist – 3
Exposed by Ringrose inside the opening minute as a Scottish horror show began. Tried to get Scotland on the front foot, but was outmuscled in the tight exchanges.

6. Jamie Ritchie – N/A
Back after a head injury against Tonga, but an abdominal injury forced him off inside the opening quarter.

7. Rory Darge – 3
Preferred to Hamish Watson, but didn’t make any impact in slowing down relentless Irish attacks.

8. Jack Dempsey – 4.5
A couple of big carries – including one from a defensive 5-metre scrum.

REPLACEMENTS:

16. Ewan Ashman – 4
A fifth Test try for the new Edinburgh hooker saved Scotland the embarrassment of being nilled. Put himself about.

17. Rory Sutherland – 3
On for the final half-hour and put himself to work, including showing a turn of pace to cut Lions mate Conan down. Gave away a scrum penalty very late on.

18. WP Nel – 3
This could’ve been the veteran tighthead’s international farewell and if it is, he derserved to bow out with something better than the collective disarray.

19. Scott Cummings – 4.5
On with Scotland 31-0 down and made a difference.

20. Matt Fagerson – 4
Worked hard after replacing skipper Ritchie inside the opening quarter, but second best to 100-cap O’Mahony.

21. Luke Crosbie – 3
Didn’t even get off the bench until the game was long over – finally replaced Darge with 15 to play. Didn’t really add anything, apart from one turnover.

22. George Horne – 4
On as an auxiliary winger for the injured Graham and was picked off when Ringrose scored. Decent footwork nearly put him away.

23. Ollie Smith – 3
Completely powerless to stop an Irish onslaught, but didn’t help with a mindless trip on Sexton. Couldn’t get into the game once he returned.

By Gavin Harper, @RugbyPass

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