Rugby World Cup 2007
Scotland ease to victory against Romania
September 18, 2007
Ali Hogg breaks a tackle to score one of his hat-trick of tries
© Getty Images
Scotland swept aside the challenge of Romania 42-0 in their Rugby World Cup Pool C clash at Murrayfield. Ally Hogg claimed a hat-trick of tries as Scotland warmed up for their clash with World Cup favourites New Zealand by strolling to victory in the Pool C match with Romania at Murrayfield.
Chris Paterson opened the scoring after little more than a minute of action and further tries were added in the first half by Hogg and Rory Lamont as Frank Hadden's side displayed more fluency than they had in their opening win over Portugal.
Hogg then touched down twice in the same corner within 12 minutes of the start of the second period to complete his treble before Lamont notched his second of the evening to end the scoring. Scotland coach Frank Hadden made four changes to the side which defeated Portugal for their second match of the World Cup against Romania at Murrayfield.
Chris Paterson was recalled to the starting line-up on the wing with Simon Webster moving to centre in place of Marcus di Rollo. Gavin Kerr came in for the injured Allan Jacobsen at prop, Ross Ford took over at hooker from Scott Lawson while lock Jim Hamilton replaced Scott Murray who, like Di Rollo, was not even on the bench.
Romania coach Daniel Santamans named the same side which was beaten 24-18 by Italy in their tournament opener. Scotland made a dream start when the Romanians failed to deal with an up and under from Dan Parks and Paterson gathered the loose ball.
The recalled utility back chipped ahead and was fortunate to see the ball elude the Romania defenders to allow him to touch down after just 68 seconds. He added the conversion to make it 7-0 and came close to claiming a second try in the seventh minute - after Webster had made a scorching break - but was stopped inches short of the line.
Stand-off Ionut Dimofte missed the chance to land a penalty for his side in a rare foray into Scotland territory but the first quarter of the match was otherwise dominated by the home side and Parks in particular. That superiority was demonstrated in the 17th minute when a classic rolling maul from the forwards culminated in a try from close range for flanker Ally Hogg, Paterson converting.
The game was lit up just after the midway point in the half when Rory Lamont showed why he is currently Scotland's most dangerous runner with a rapier break which Romania's scrambling defence did well to snuff out 10 metres from their own line.
Hadden's side lost some of their momentum in the following 10 minutes though, in part due to a succession of penalties conceded at the breakdown. Another break from Webster sparked some more fluent play as first Sean Lamont and then Rob Dewey burst through the Romania line.
Dewey's run created sufficient confusion in the opposition's defensive line that a flat pass from Parks enabled Rory Lamont to slide in for Scotland's third try of the night two minutes before half-time and Paterson again converted.
Mike Blair thought he had pounced for his country's fourth try in the 45th minute after a horrendous knock-on from full-back Iulian Dumitras but the scrum-half was penalised for a double-movement by referee Nigel Owens.
However, two minutes later Scotland did add to their try tally when Blair raced down the touchline and flicked the ball inside for Hogg to stroll over and secure a bonus point. Paterson kept up his 100% kicking record to make it 28-0. With the points safe, Hadden introduced Scott MacLeod and Craig Smith in place of key second-rower Nathan Hines and recalled prop Gavin Kerr.
Within seconds of the changes, Hogg touched down in the same corner to complete his hat-trick as the Romanian outfit became increasingly ragged and dispirited. Hugo Southwell, Chris Cusiter and Scott Lawson all entered the fray on the hour mark and Scotland lost some of their fluency as a result.
The hat-trick hero limped off in the 65th minute to be replaced by Kelly Brown while Nikki Walker was given a run-out in place of Parks, with Paterson moving to stand-off. The final quarter was distinctly stale as a result of the numerous substitutions but Rory Lamont added considerable colour when he brilliantly left the Romania defence in his wake to score Scotland's sixth try after being fed by Lawson.
Scotland (14) 42
Romania (0) 0
Scotland: R. Lamont, S. Lamont, Webster, Dewey, Paterson, Parks, Blair, Kerr, Ford, E. Murray, Hines, Hamilton, White, Hogg,
Replacements: S. Lawson, Smith, MacLeod, Brown, Cusiter, Southwell, Walker.
Romania: Dumitras, Fercu, Gal, Gontineac, Brezoianu, Dimofte, Sirbu, Toderasc, Tincu, B. Balan, Socol, Petre, Corodeanu,
Replacements: Florea, Mavrodin, Ratiu, Tudori, Calafeteanu, Tofan, Vlaicu.
Referee: Nigel Owens (WRFU)