Rhona Lloyd takes her Scotland try tally to 22 – but is it a record?

Prolific winger has touched down more than any current team-mate, but uncertainty remains about scorers in previous eras

Rhona Lloyd post-Wales
Rhona Lloyd celebrates after Scotland's win over Wales at the weekend. Image: Tom Maher/Inpho.

RHONA LLOYD scored her 22nd try for Scotland in the 20-18 win over Wales on Saturday, cementing her status as the leading try-scorer in the current squad. She may also now be at the top of the all-time rankings – but is loath to claim that title given the far-from-complete statistical record from the national team’s early years.

Scotland Women first played an international in 1993, when captain and scrum-half Sandra Colamartino scored both tries in a 10-0 win over Ireland. But while that result and scorer is a matter of undisputed record, many matches between then and 2009, when the Scottish Women’s Rugby Union was incorporated into the SRU, have not had their full details enshrined in the official history. 

The chat in the men’s game has been about Duhan van der Merwe’s bid to overtake Stuart Hogg’s all-time record of 27 Scotland tries – the winger is currently just one behind, with Darcy Graham his nearest active rival on 24. But while Lloyd knows she is now three tries ahead of team-mate Chloe Rollie, she cannot say with any certainty that no-one got any more in those early days. 


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“I’ve got 22 tries, but we literally don’t know what the record is, which is a shame,” she said after the Six Nations victory at Cardiff Arms Park. “I don’t think I can claim the record based on not knowing!

“Hopefully in the future the girls will know that, and as women’s rugby grows we’ll have things like that to keep chasing and have this competition  because it’s definitely keeping all the Scotland fans entertained in the men’s game.”

Lloyd’s team are set to rise in the world rankings as a result of the win over Wales – their seventh consecutive victory. That is the best run of wins in the team’s history, although Lloyd revealed she was not aware of it at the time.

“I actually didn’t know that until after the game,” she said. “I guess we’re not focusing on things like that, we’re just focusing on each performance. But obviously it’s really nice to have things like that to use to celebrate the win but also celebrate these milestones for Scottish women’s rugby.

“I think Scottish women’s rugby has massively grown, and stats like that just back up everything that we feel. We’re getting more depth, we’re getting stronger as a team, we’re going from strength to strength and we want to keep pushing up the world rankings.”

Try-scorers invariably get more attention than those who create their opportunities, but Lloyd was happy to pay tribute to the players inside her. “Meryl Smith, Emma Orr, Lisa Thomson, Helen Nelson – their ball-playing ability is absolutely world-class,” she said. “And that is why we’re seeing the finishers score more tries, because of players like that.

“If I compared the tries I was scoring in my first couple of years playing for Scotland to now, it’s night and day, because you’re getting so many more opportunities with the girls that we have inside us – and with the forwards’ ability to have those connections with the backs to get us go-forward.” 

Scotland’s next match is against France at the Hive on Saturday, when they will have to play at the very top of their game to give themselves any chance of extending their winning run to eight. “We have a massive challenge coming up against France,” captain Rachel Malcolm acknowledged. “They’re a phenomenal outfit, and for us to go into that one, put in a performance and compete, we will have to be better than we were against Wales.

“It’s about pushing on and not letting the good work of the last seven games stop. We need to be more clinical, so as much as we can be excited about all the records  and it is phenomenal, because this is a team that deserves the plaudits  if we want to compete with France we cannot play the way we did on Saturday. We have to push on again.”

UPDATE: Scotland are up two places to their highest ever position of sixth in the World Rugby Women’s Rankings following the first round of Six Nations games.

TOP TEN:

1 England 96.18 points

2 New Zealand 90.56

3 France 87.89

4 Canada 86.27

5 Australia 81.61

6 Scotland 75.90

7 Italy 75.61

8 Wales 75.14

9 USA 72.02

10 Ireland 71.52

 

 


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About Stuart Bathgate 1387 Articles
Stuart has been the rugby correspondent for both The Scotsman and The Herald, and was also The Scotsman’s chief sports writer for 14 years from 2000.

2 Comments

  1. Would archived microfilms of The Scotsmand or Edinburgh papers at the NLS have the information? Big project but with all the dates you can narrow down the research easier. Anything on the 5 Nations entries on wikipedia?

    • Yeah it’s not as if the data is from Victorian era. It’s only 3 decades so surely a bit of determined detective work can bring this all out. If Rhona doesn’t have the record yet I’m sure she soon will have

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