Autumn Tests: Scotland player ratings (versus Wales)

Scotland struggle to impose themselves – individually and collectively – on a tough afternoon in Cardiff

George Horne
George Horne made a bg impact off the bench for Scotland ***Image: ©Fotosport/David Gibson***

Scotland player ratings after their loss to Wales in the Doddie Weir Cup at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff –

15. Blair Kinghorn – 7 out of 10

Solid at the back – but did not get any opportunity to show what he can do in attack. He was Scotland’s top carrier with 58 metres but that came from trucking the ball back into Wales’ smothering kick-chase. Kicked very well from hand, and his kicking-off was spot on.

14. Tommy Seymour– 6

The game was too narrow for him so he rarely got the ball in hand – and never in space – making only 16 metres off 4 carries. Safe in defence – and particularly effective in the air.

13. Huw Jones – 5

A difficult afternoon defensively – badly exposed in the lead up to both Welsh tries. Always a threat in attack but this isn’t the first time questions have been asked about his reliability when not in possession.

12.  Alex Dunbar – 6

Strong on the ball. Showed conspicuous game awareness  and some fancy footwork to carve out a superb break in the first half which should have produced a try – but a couple of slack moments in defence, especially in the lead-up to Wales’ first try, count against him.

11. Lee Jones – 6

The game just did not run his way – but he chased hard – and did look dangerous on the few occasions when he got ball in hand. Did well to get across and push North into touch early on when the giant Welsh winger looked certain to score off Gareth Anscombe’s cross-kick


10. Adam Hastings – 6

A tough afternoon for the boy wonder – but he did not go into hiding. Missed a penalty to touch early on, but bounced right back and kept looking for wrk. Very difficult for him to get onto the front foot with the Welsh domination of the contact area and their defensive line speed. Kicked his goals confidently.

9. Ali Price – 6

Under constant pressure at the break down – but needed to be more authoritative – and to find the means to nullify the pressure in order to give his backs some space. He may be a more mature player now than nine months ago, but we don’t want him to completely stop asking questions of the opposition defence.


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1. Allan Dell – 6

Apart from the scrum leading up to North’s try, the Scots loose-head rarely looked uncomfortable – nor, however,  did Dillon Lewis. Got stuck in around the park.

2. Stuart McInally– 6

He led from the front and took his try well. Line-out was good.

3. WP Nel – 6

It was a low scrummage game – but the anticipated edge did not materialise – and, indeed, a couple of times Wales had the upper hand.

4. Ben Toolis – 7

Put in a big shift around the park and held his own at the line-out. Will be kicking himself for the handling error late on as Scotland pushed for there second try,

5. Jonny Gray – 6

Good at the line-out and worked hard elsewhere – but soft, needless penalties cost his team – especially the one for a double movement on the Welsh line when it felt as though the game was turning.

6. Jamie Ritchie – 6

A grim afternoon trying to counteract Dan Lydiate – not overly effectively – but he gave it his best shot.

7. Hamish Watson – 7

Fought manfully against a very good Welsh back row – and doggedly worked his way into the game. The team’s top tackler with 14, and led the carrying stats amongst the forwards with 35-metres gained.

8. Ryan Wilson – 7

Fronted the pack up when there was a very real danger of the game running away from them which prompted a mini-revival just before and after half-time – but, overall, did not have a great afternoon.



16. Fraser Brown – 5

Line-out continued to function well after he came on as a 56th minute replacement for captain McInally, but had few chances to make his mark in the loose.

17. Alex Allan– 5

Replaced Dell in 56th minute, Not really an impact player.

18. Simon Berghan  – 5

Added energy. Got his hands on the ball seven times during the last 26 minutes after replacing Nel.

19. Grant Gilchrist – 5

Replaced Gray for the final ten minutes.

20. Matt Fagerson – 6

Replaced Ritchie on 62 minutes. It would be good to see what he can do from a start. Not the biggest back-row in the world but an agile and powerful carrier – and might ask the opposition a few questions that are not being posed at the moment.

21. George Horne – 8

Looked sharp when he came on. Grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck — and almost turned it with the chip through that his brother just could not ground cleanly.

22. Peter Horne – 7

The two siblings for Fife added real urgency to Scotland during the final quarter, and big brother was perhaps unlucky not to get the benefit of the doubt from the TMO when he latched on to little brother’s chip over the top.

23. Darcy Graham – 6

A couple of typically lively interventions in heavy traffic but arrived on the scene too late in the day to really make his mark on his international debut.

Analysis and reaction: More positives than negatives for Scotland, despite defeat in Cardiff

About David Barnes 4012 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.