The Top Ten Players From The Ireland & Scotland Game Statistically Will Surprise You

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Who needs Johnny Sexton?

The lads over at Rugby.net have crunched the number from Ireland’s loss to Scotland and some of the stats may shock you.

They’ve compiled a list of the top ten performers from the game, with the top three being made up of Irish players, despite the Scots coming away with the win.

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To learn about how these lists are crafted, click here.

They’ve also come up with some really interesting points.

  • Stuart Hogg, for all the flash of the first half and his brace of tries, conceded four turnovers and missed 33% of his tackle opportunities.
  • The Scots aggressive line speed led to a large number of missed tackles. 85% tackle completion is extremely low for test match rugby. One might argue that with the deliberate line speed, the first up tackler was simply looking to knock the ballcarrier’s momentum off behind the gain line and the follow on players were to complete the tackle.
  • With the lion’s share possession and territory, Ireland had 32 defenders beaten to only 8 by Scotland.
  • Scotland only fed one scrummage the whole match (the one that collapsed early doors before the put didn’t count). How’s that for Irish ball handling to only concede a single scrummage?
  • Speaking of the Irish playing a possession game, the Scottish halfbacks kicked as much as their Irish counterparts, despite having only half the opportunities.
  • The Gray boys accounted for 45 tackles, well over a quarter of Scotland’s final tally.
  • The Scottish midfield on the other hand had 9 missed tackles between them.

It looks like Ireland did actually stick to Schmidt’s game plan, but at the end of the day the Scots were rewarded for their daring attacking play. Ireland perhaps just made one too many simple errors, and were simply just not clinical enough in the final third unlike the Scots.