13 vs 26
Scotland came from behind to record a 26-13 victory over Japan in Saturday’s friendly in Tokyo.
Japan had their eyes on revenge after losing to the Scots at last year’s Rugby World Cup, but it was ultimately a comfortable victory for the visitors, who put on a strong second-half performance.
Scotland skipper Greig Laidlaw sent the ball between the sticks to give his team a sixth-minute lead but Japan soon replied with a try from Shota Horie, who capitalised on a missed tackle from Duncan Taylor to go over the line.
Two penalties from Laidlaw ensured that Scotland regained the lead but a kick from Yu Tamara ensured that Japan held a narrow lead on the half-hour mark.
However, just before the break, Scotland were awarded a penalty try after an infringement from Rikiya Matsuda and after Laidlaw’s conversion, Scotland were 16-10 ahead at the interval.
Japan’s ill-discipline had seen them reduced to 13 men and Scotland took full advantage when WP Nelpowered through three challenges to go over the line, before Laidlaw converted for the second time in the match.
A second penalty from Tamura moved Japan onto 13 points in the 57th minute, but Laidlaw responded with a penalty of his own seven minutes later to make it a 13-point game.
The two teams will meet again at Tokyo’s Ajinomoto Stadium for a second Test on June 25.
JAPAN – 13
Tries: Shota Horie (8)
Penalties: Yu Tamura (28,55)
Cons: Yu Tamura (9)
SCOTLAND – 26
Tries: Penalty Try (37),WP Nel (41)
Penalties: Greig Laidlaw (4,15,19,62)
Cons: Greig Laidlaw (38,43)
RR World Rankings outcome on Result
F/T Japan (on 75.35 points) at home 13 vs 26 Scotland (on 77.45 points)
|Outcome||Rating Point||New JAP||New SCO|
|SCO win by 1-15 points||1.09||74.26||78.54|
Japan: 15 Kotaro Matsushima, 14 Mifiposeti Paea, 13 Tim Bennetts, 12 Harumichi Tatekawa, 11 Yasutaka Sasakura, 10 Yu Tamura, 9 Kaito Shigeno, 8 Amanaki Mafi, 7 Shokei Kin, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Naohiro Kotaki, 4 Hitoshi Ono, 3 Kensuke Hatakeyama, 2 Shota Horie, 1 Keita Inagaki
Replacements: 16 Takeshi Kizu, 17 Masataka Mikami, 18 Shinnosuke Kakinaga, 19 Kotaro Yatabe, 20 Hiroki Yamamoto, 21 Keisuke Uchida, 22 Kosei Ono, 23 Rikiya Matsuda
Scotland: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Duncan Taylor, 12 Matt Scott, 11 Damien Hoyland, 10 Ruaridh Jackson, 9 Greig Laidlaw, 8 Ryan Wilson, 7 John Hardie, 6 John Barclay, 5 Jonny Gray, 4 Richie Gray, 3 Willem Nel, 2 Stuart McInally, 1 Alasdair Dickinson
Replacements: 16 Fraser Brown, 17 Rory Sutherland, 18 Moray Low, 19 Tim Swinson, 20 David Denton, 21 Henry Pyrgos, 22 Peter Horne, 23 Sean Maitland
Date: Saturday, June 18
Venue: Toyota Stadium, Tokyo
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant Referees: Marius Mitrea (Italy), Brendan Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Ian Smith (Australia)