Scotland v Samoa: Tommy Seymour predicts tough Test for hosts

Scotland winger Tommy Seymour
Seymour has been one of Scotland's top performers in recent seasons
Autumn Test: Scotland v Samoa
Venue: Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh
Date: Saturday 11 November Kick-off: 14:30 GMT
Coverage: BBC One, Connected TV, online & the BBC Sport app & Radio Scotland 810MW

Scotland winger Tommy Seymour insists Samoa will offer more than physicality when they come to Murrayfield for the first autumn Test on Saturday.

The Samoans are famed for their athleticism but Scotland are preparing to deal with multiple areas of threat.

"Instantly you notice their size but there's a lot of subtlety to their game as well," said Seymour.

"They like to play expansive, entertaining rugby. We know how difficult it's going to be."

And he added: "Samoa are hugely physical, they have some incredible athletes across the park and it's not just the size, it's the agility and their capacity to be athletic that's really impressive.

"There are some really class players who know how to play the game, it's not just about banging through, creating holes and trying to bruise bodies.

Scotland beat Samoa
Scotland edged out Samoa during the 2015 Rugby World Cup

"Their ability with their big athletes is that if they do get across that line, and they do get quick ball, that's when their subtleties and ability with the ball come to the fore."

Scotland won the last meeting - at the 2015 World Cup - 36-33 to reach the quarter-finals.

But with the Scots having trailed 26-23 at half-time, Seymour saw plenty to be impressed with about the Samoans.

"We've had some really close games with them and it's well documented that it's been narrow margins," the Glasgow Warriors player added.

"The most recent one was the World Cup pool game. You could argue that we were fortunate to be where we were at half time as they probably played the better rugby in the first half and we managed to keep pegging them back. They'll be coming to Murrayfield looking to win that game and we'll be ready for a hard Test."

'I had a really good look at my game'

Lock Jonny Gray is back in the squad after picking up a wrist injury in June and the 23-year-old says that while his injury lay-off initially proved difficult, he eventually made positive use of the time.

"I've never had an injury to this scale before and I struggled at the start if I'm being honest - I didn't know what to do," he said.

"But it was good to then sit down and set some goals. I looked at a lot of footage, watched the Lions, looked at other second rows.

"You look at the talent that's out there from all over the world and it's unbelievable. You get to compare yourself and really have that time to sit down and focus, and not think about games coming up in the next week. I think you learn a lot from not being involved.

Jonny Gray
Jonny Gray says the standards in the Scotland camp bring the best out of the whole squad

"I had a really good look at my game. To sit down with coaches from both Scotland and Glasgow, to have the quality of guys at both camps, you can speak to them at any time. It's been great, as has having one-on-one time with the coaches to work on skills."

Gray insists Scotland "will struggle" against Samoa on Saturday if they are not at their best and says he relishes the standards set by head coach Gregor Townsend, and the rest of the squad.

"When you play for Scotland we know we have to play at our best to beat any team and that's why the standards are so high here," he added.

"The culture here - if someone is not performing they get called out straight away and everyone buys into that and respects it."

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