Italy win was coming, says Scotland centre Mark Bennett

Mark Bennett scores against Italy in the Six Nations Championship
Mark Bennett scored against Italy as they toppled Scotland in the Six Nations Championship this year

Scotland centre Mark Bennett believes last weekend's win over Italy in Turin had been on the cards for some months.

The victory marked the Scots' first of 2015 after a Six Nations Championship that promised much, but delivered disappointment.

"I said it a few times through the Six Nations - I think it's been coming, we've finally got one at the weekend," said Bennett.

"We'll hopefully get another this weekend and push on to the World Cup."

Scotland meet the Italians again in their third Rugby World Cup warm-up fixture this Saturday at Murrayfield.

After head coach Vern Cotter trimmed his extended squad from 47 to 40 on Monday, Bennett has been named in the matchday group and is expected to take the field for the first time since sustaining a shoulder injury in March.

"I've been ready to go for a few weeks now," said the 22-year-old. "I'm feeling good, I've been in and around the squad, so I know all the calls.

"It's been a lot of rehab, a lot of time in the gym trying to get strong again, a lot of band exercises. I started off with that, then once I was back running again there was a lot of fitness trying to get myself back up to pace with where the guys have been.

"I knew I would be fit in my own mind because I've been a quick healer before and I've still got youth on my side. I was expecting to be there or thereabouts.

"Five months is a long time and I'm not a good spectator, especially seeing Glasgow go on and finish so well at the end of the season. It has been tough, but I'm back now, that's all that matters."

A late Henry Pyrgos try from the Scots decided an otherwise turgid affair in Turin dominated by errors and imprecision from both teams.

"It's going to be a tough game - Italy took us on at the weekend and they created opportunities," added Bennett. "In parts I think we were lucky to come away the way that we did.

"They're going to be coming at us hammer and tong but we know that we need to raise our game as well, because in parts we weren't up to the standards we expect."

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