Parks put boot into brave Georgia
INVERCARGILL, 14 Sept. - Scotland have not set the Rugby World Cup on fire in their two matches but there was satisfaction in the camp after their 15-6 win against Georgia in the Pool B match. "We came here to Invercargill looking for two wins and with the four-day turnaround it was tough, but we have got what we wanted and can look ahead," said skipper Rory Lawson after the Georgia win.
It was only thanks to the boot of Dan Parks that the Scots came out on top on a night when the conditions were atrocious.
Despite several misses Parks still landed four penalties and a drop goal on a rain-soaked evening at Rugby Park Stadium to keep the Scots' noses ahead of Georgia.
It was a match in which neither try line was seriously threatened.
"It was difficult conditions and Georgia are a physical side. It was a workmanlike performance from us,'' said Lawson, who was standing in as captain for Alastair Kellock.
"We plugged away and played rugby in the right areas and took the points when they were on offer. We took on the Georgia scrum. Our front five were outstanding tonight. They showed what they were all about."
Despite Scotland's feeling of mission accomplished they failed to show major improvement on their opening performance, when two late tries earned a win against Romania.
Scotland led 9-3 at half-time thanks to two penalties and a drop goal from Parks, whose excellent kicking game was responsible for keeping up the territorial pressure on Georgia throughout the match.
There was no score in the second half until the 69th minute when Parks landed a penalty from 20m straight in front.
Georgia answered with a penalty immediately after when Merab Kvirikashvili kicked truly from 25m to make it 12-6.
The restart saw another Scotland excursion into Georgia's half and another penalty, slotted by Parks to make it 15-6.
Georgia were brave in the face of massive territorial domination by the Scots but ultimately a committed defence was all they could bring.
"I'm disappointed, we made too many mistakes and they played better," said Georgia captain and scrum half Irakli Abuseridze. "We gave away a lot of penalties and a lot of ball."