Scotland made it third time fortunate at Murrayfield as they cruised to their first dwelling win of the Guinness Six Nations with a record-breaking 52-10 thrashing of Italy.
Skipper Stuart Hogg admitted forward of the sport he was feeling nervous about standing-in for the injured Finn Russell at fly-half.
However the full-back had nothing to fret about as his facet ran in eight tries in opposition to an Azzurri outfit who will probably be glad to see the tip of a depressing marketing campaign.
Hooker Dave Cherry scored twice on his first begin, whereas scrum-half Scott Steele additionally marked his full debut with a strive.
There was a brace too for Duhan Van Der Merwe whereas Darcy Graham, Huw Jones and Sam Johnson contributed to the Scots’ largest ever Six Nations victory.
Too straightforward for the boys in white on the day! pic.twitter.com/es6gxMab3p
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) March 20, 2021
Following agonising back-to-back defeats in opposition to Wales and Eire, this was the soother Gregor Townsend’s staff wanted and can elevate spirits forward of subsequent week’s delayed curtain-closer with France in Paris.
Italy had shipped a median of 46 factors of their 4 earlier video games – and the haemorrhaging continued as Townsend’s staff grew to become the quickest staff to this point this yr to run up a bonus level, taking simply 28 minutes to dot down 4 tries.
But it was the guests who began the brighter, scoring inside six minutes as Luca Bigi squeezed over to attain within the nook as Scotland’s maul defence crumbled.
However it could not final as Italy’s personal lack of ability to withstand a line-out drive noticed Scotland hit again inside 4 minutes, with Cherry powering over. Hogg’s conversion skidded broad but it surely didn’t matter as they moved in entrance on 14 minutes.
Matt Fagerson after which Jones offered two enormous carries to drive Italy scrambling again to their very own 22.
Scotland maintained their endurance earlier than exploding to the left as Hogg, Johnson and Hamish Watson mixed to launch the juggernaut that’s Van Der Merwe in house out broad.
The large wing motored over the road, leaving a string of our bodies in his wake, earlier than skipping in the direction of the posts handy Hogg a neater shot on the extras.
Paolo Garbisi fired a penalty over but it surely was futile resistance.
Federico Mori noticed yellow for a reckless shoulder hit on Johnson and Scotland had been fast to use their momentary man benefit when Sean Maitland charged to nearby of the road.
Jones took over however was instantly pounced upon by Mattia Bellini earlier than he may rating.
However there was no salvation for the Azzurri as Jones popped a go off the bottom for Graham to jog over.
Italy regarded shocked. Garbisi tried to take some stress off his facet by pinning the Scots down in their very own 22 with a excessive kick – however the tempo at which Townsend’s staff moved the ball was just too fast for Franco Smith’s males to deal with.
Van Der Merwe chewed up floor down the left earlier than passing to Hogg. His instant offload to Jones caught Italy without warning, with the Glasgow centre charging by an enormous hole for one more oh-so straightforward try to the bonus level earlier than the half-hour mark had even been reached.
The half-time whistle introduced merciful respite for Italy – but it surely was solely transient, as Cherry scored his second with a carbon copy of his first, peeling off the maul earlier than diving for the road from shut vary.
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) March 20, 2021
Italy’s troubles worsened once more as Sebastian Negri was given a stint within the bin for a deliberate knock-on, with Steele – so spectacular together with his fast tempo across the breakdown – this time capitalising as he adopted Johnson’s fast dart in the direction of the road to crawl over for strive quantity six on 52 minutes.
By the point Negri was again on, Mori had already headed previous him as he was additionally sin-binned for a tip deal with on Hogg.
And the tries continued to flood in. Johnson obtained a genuinely-earned rating with quarter-hour left as Scotland took a fast faucet penalty, whereas Van Der Merwe added his second within the 71st minute, powering by the Italian ranks like a bowling ball to attain from midway after Ali Worth’s preliminary break.
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