Townsend holds one-on-ones to solve Scotland's Six Nations away form

Mick Quinn-Screenshot

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt on Thursday named the following team to face Scotland in the Six Nations at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.

Replacements: 16-Fraser Brown, 17-Jamie Bhatti, 18-WP Nel, 19-Tim Swinson, 20-David Denton, 21-Ali Price, 22-Nick Grigg, 23-Lee Jones.

The Ulster lock is back to full fitness, but has been unable to get his jersey back from Devin Toner.

Speaking at Carton House during the pre-match press conference, Schmidt said those anxious that Ireland's attack doesn't go out wide and to the backs enough need to look at the games they've played a little closer. It's two of the best passes you'll see in world rugby.

"Those sorts of things should allow us the variety to try to keep a sort of balance in what we're doing to attack them". Will be a huge asset against Scotland, who are known to be menacing at the breakdown especially.

Scotland team: Stuart Hogg (Glasgow Warriors); Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh Rugby), Huw Jones, Pete Horne (both Glasgow Warriors), Sean Maitland (Saracens); Finn Russell (Glasgow Warriors), Greig Laidlaw (ASM Clermont-Auvergne); Gordon Reid (London Irish), Stuart McInally, Simon Berghan; Grant Gilchrist (all Edinburgh), Jonny Gray (Glasgow Warriors); John Barclay (Scarlets, captain), Hamish Watson (Edinburgh Rugby), Ryan Wilson (Glasgow Warriors).

Paddy Jackson had a decent afternoon, but there is a chasm in quality in terms of game management and Sexton's mere presence on the field makes all those around him perform at a different level.

Fergus McFadden was poor when he came on against Wales, and was clearly at fault for one of their tries. I get slagged off for playing a fairly rudimentary form of the game.

There will be moments when Scotland get to play, uncomfortable moments when Ireland get exposed in midfield or on the tramlines.

"He played in Japan and was absolutely outstanding in the back line along with Keith Earls".

Conan was always going to be under pressure after his defensive error against Wales.

Even using the tactic of getting Murray to break without the ball to draw the Scottish back row off the base of the scrum will pay dividends.

"I gave him feedback about November, but also about what we like about his game, work rate off the ball, confidence taking the ball to the opposition and his improved defence", continued Townsend.



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