Six Nations: Can Wales fly after fourth successive win in Scotland?

By Dafydd PritchardBBC Wales Sport in Edinburgh
Dan Biggar is sent flying by his opposite number Finn Russell
Dan Biggar was making his 30th appearance for Wales in Murrayfield

Murrayfield is becoming a second home for Wales.

The men in red have won their last four matches in Edinburgh, the latest secured in exhilarating fashion on Sunday as they sealed an eighth successive victory against Scotland.

It is an impressive record, yet the significance of Welsh Murrayfield triumphs often goes beyond the results and their influence on Six Nations tables.

This is a venue where Wales have been revived time and again, a place where they have resurrected hope from the rubble of preceding failure.

And as they have done in the past, it was with the aim of rebuilding that Wales travelled to Murrayfield.

2015 Six Nations: Scotland 23-26 Wales highlights

After a demoralising 21-16 defeat by England on the first night of the Six Nations, Welsh hopes of a third title under Warren Gatland were left hanging by a thread.

There was a clamour for change, though Gatland resisted a radical overhaul and decided to give his trusted players a chance to "redeem themselves".

"I'm a great believer in giving players that opportunity to do that," he said after Sunday's win.

"We knew how difficult it was going to be to come here, and we were on edge, which was positive."

History repeats itself

Wales felt the tension acutely as they knew nothing other than a win would keep them in contention for the championship - the same scenario they faced in 2011.

Having lost their opening game to England at the Millennium Stadium, two tries from Shane Williams helped Wales recover with a 24-6 triumph at Murrayfield.

Victories against Italy and Ireland followed, although a defeat to France saw Wales finish fourth, albeit level on points with the second-placed Les Bleus.

At this point, the rebuilding work may have seem botched, an unfinished job. But Gatland was sculpting his side for a bigger undertaking: the World Cup.

His long-term vision laid the foundation for a run to the semi-finals - and, some might say, a red card away from the final - and he is fuelled by the same conviction now.

A long-term vision

Before beating South Africa in November, Gatland said: "Our whole focus is getting out of our pool in the World Cup."

The New Zealander is adamant this Six Nations campaign and the previous autumn series are primarily preparatory tournaments for world rugby's showpiece event in September.

Gatland has said he wants to be judged on the World Cup, but do not let that disguise how fiercely he values the Six Nations.

"The unfortunate thing for the championship is, with you guys [the media], there's very little middle ground," he added.

Rhys Webb scores Wales' opening try
Rhys Webb's try against Scotland was his fourth in 11 appearances for Wales

"The team that wins gets the praise, the team that loses gets absolutely criticised.

"What makes this championship so exciting and great as a spectator sport, is the ability for any team to beat each other. As a sports lover, you don't want predictability."

Wales have recovered from an opening defeat to be crowned Six Nations champions, doing so in spectacular style in 2013 under Rob Howley when Gatland was on British and Irish Lions duty.

And if they are to mount a similar comeback this year, it will have been another reviving win at Murrayfield which set the ball rolling.

"[We read] quotes [from Scotland coach Vern Cotter] in the newspaper saying that we were looking at coming up here expecting to win and treating it like another day in the office," said Gatland.

"The respect we have for Scotland, we definitely came up here not thinking it was just going to be a walk in the park because we knew how tough it was going to be.

"The way the players prepared, the emotion they had in the changing room beforehand, you knew it meant a lot to them to give a performance and get a result."