Scotland player ratings after their hopes of securing a rare away win in Dublin went down in the flames of a 28-8 defeat.
15. Stuart Hogg – 8 out of 10
His huge spiral kicks and threat with ball in hand helped put Scotland on the front foot several times but perhaps tried to force a few plays right from the start. What should have been a try creating pass on 50 minutes flew high over Kinghorn’s head, although the winger did score in the next phase and Hogg’s pass in the build-up was crucial. 120 metres made with the ball in hand was comfortably more than any other player on the park, except opposite number and man-of-the-match Rob Kearney.
14. Blair Kinghorn – 8
Took his try superbly. Showed a bit of power and pace to get up the touch-line and then sent a great offload back inside with his first real touch in international rugby on the 15 minute mark. Took a cricket slip-fielder catch a few plays later. Stockdale stepped inside him for try number two, although the Scotsman was really up against it trying to defend that one. Great feet on another good break at start of the second half, but was let down by a lack of support.
13. Huw Jones – 6
Did brilliantly to rip Ireland wide open by collecting his own chip over the top midway through the first half, but then butchered a certain seven points with a poor pass, although Hogg could have cut in to make it easier for the centre. Continually prodded and probed at Ireland, but played second-fiddle to a towering performance of opposite number Garry Ringrose.
12. Peter Horne – 6
A lack of accuracy at key moments cost Scotland dearly. Threw the interception pass which gifted Jacob Stockdale Ireland’s opening try, and let Garry Ringrose slip past on the inside to launch a promising Irish attack just before the half hour mark, but showed what he can bring to the party with an excellent diagonal into the corner which put Ireland under pressure just before half-tome. Made a nice break as Scotland tried to battle back into the game around the hour mark, but then squandered that opportunity by miscuing a difficult miss pass to Kinghorn when the easier offload to Huw Jones would have got the job done.
11. Sean Maitland – 6
Snaffled Keith Earls as he tried to tidy up a Scottish hack ahead to earn Laidlaw’s first successful penalty. Lost out to Kearney in a couple of aerial contests but generally solid, if not spectacular.
BT Premiership 10 March 2018
10. Finn Russell – 6
No howlers today but no miracle plays either. Kept plugging away but a quiet game from one of the player Scotland really needed on form.
9. Greig Laidlaw – 6
Looked tired. With Scotland spending so much time on the back foot, didn’t really get a chance to direct operations.
1. Gordon Reid – 7
Scottish scrum stacked up against a very strong Irish front-row.
2. Stuart McInally – 7
Won an important penalty on the deck as Ireland started to really build pressure around the ten minute mark. Another big shift in the loose, but line-out was a bit of a mess. Played less than an hour after two full 80-minutes shifts against France and England.
3. Simon Berghan – 7
Another solid performance at set-piece and around the park before being replaced by Nel on 54 minutes.
4. Grant Gilchrist – 7
A dogged performance. Unrelenting work-rate for 80 minutes.
International 10 March 2018
5. Jonny Gray – 7
Battled on as he always does, making 23 tackles, before being replaced by Tim Swinson with ten minutes to go; but Scotland were bullied out of it by Ireland’s pack power and their big men didn’t have any answer to that.
6. John Barclay – 7
Made a monstrous 25 tackles and secured a couple of useful turnovers, but with Scotland under serious pressure from the opposition and the referee at the breakdown, he wasn’t able to influence proceedings like he did a fortnight ago.
7. Hamish Watson – 6
Important turnover in 26th minute. Might be slightly disappointed that he failed to halt Conor Murray’s momentum when the scrum-half went over at the start of the second half. A bit of a reality check: this is a decent Scottish back-row but not as good as England made them look a fortnight ago.
8. Ryan Wilson – 6
Had a couple of nice touches early on, including some excellent quick hands to release Kinghorn just before being forced out of the game with a head injury in the 17th minute. Scotland missed his combativeness and his link play.
16. Fraser Brown – 6
Won a big penalty over the tackle in front of his posts soon after joining the fray on the hour mark.
17. Jamie Bhatti – 6
Pretty harshly penalised for taking Keith Earls out beyond the ball.
18. WP Nel – 6
Penalised for dropping the first scrum he was involved in, but started to get the upper hand once the new front-rows started to bed in.
19. Tim Swinson – 5
Took over from Gray during last ten minutes.
20. Dave Denton – 6
An earlier than expected appearance as replacement for the concussed Wilson. Didn’t managed to get Scotland on the front foot with big carries.
21. Ali Price – 5
The game was gone by the time he replaced Laidlaw with 14 minutes to go.
22. Nick Grigg – 5
Arrival in 72nd minute was too late to make an impact.
23. Lee Jones – 5
Got eight minutes during the first half while Kinghorn completed an HIA.