A real underdog this year in the competition and I wouldn’t be surprised if they finish above Wales. The first game is huge for Scotland, a win at the Principality stadium would be a huge confidence boost and a big statement to the rest of the competition.
TEAM NEWS: Stuart Hogg is back at 15 for @Scotlandteam while Gregor Townsend has also made big calls at scrum-half, second-row and on the wing! https://t.co/5HWjrjcORA #WALvSCO #NatWest6Nations pic.twitter.com/FeDA4HCbup
— NatWest 6 Nations (@SixNationsRugby) January 31, 2018
The inclusion of Stuart Hogg is very positive after struggling with injuries this season and he will play a key part in Scotland’s attacking mind set.
Huw Jones will be another player to keep an eye on with great footwork, power and pace, he brings a lot of qualities into the centre. If they can pull together a win in their first game, I’d expect them to go on to finish 2nd or 3rd. Gregor Townsend played a part in their last win away to Wales back in 2002, and he will be hoping for the same result this time around.
After a lacklustre autumn series and a number of injuries mounting up, including Lions’ player of the tour, Jonathan Davies, who is a huge loss as he is always at the forefront of everything Wales and the Scarlets do well. A well-deserved call up at last for James Davies (brother of Jonathan) after his sensational performances in the Pro 14 and Europe.
The one thing the Welsh can be confident about would be the form of the Scarlets and they will hope to see a similar style of play for their country. If they do manage to play a free and open style game then they may just finish higher than I’ve predicted, but it will be a huge achievement if they can emulate their past successes under Gatland and co.