Scotland embrace World Cup underdog status

Scotland have embraced their underdog status ahead of their World Cup quarter-final with Australia, admitting life will be tough against the tournament’s form team.

Despite being planted in the World Cup’s “Pool of Death” the Wallabies escaped with the equal-best defensive record with Ireland – having conceded just two tries and 35 points.

Scotland loosehead prop Alasdair Dickinson tagged the Wallabies the biggest threat in the tournament, despite defending champions New Zealand also progressing to the knock-out stages undefeated.

However, the impressive and contrasting victories Australia produced to topple hosts England and Wales in successive weeks has reminded Dickinson of the enormity of Scotland’s task this weekend.

“They are the form team so far this World Cup. Definitely,” Dickinson said.

“They were outstanding against England and showed how clinical they can be in that Wales match.

“It’s going to be a huge test for us.”

More specifically, the 32-year-old is wondering exactly where his team’s points will come from – a surprising admission considering Scotland have scored the fifth most points of all teams through the pool stage.

He concedes coach Vern Cotter will need to come up with some creative approaches to crack the Wallabies defensive wall which stymied Wales’ attack in a 15-6 win on the weekend – despite defending with two men in the sin-bin for seven minutes.

“How do we score against a team who’ve only conceded one try (sic) so far?” he said on Monday.

“We just have to be confident we can score but we know how difficult it’s going to be.

“It seems like they have built a brick wall across their line but we just need to look at what we’ve done in previous games and see if we can improve.

“There is no doubt we are going to be massive underdogs but we can take confidence from that fact we’ve got out of a pretty tough group to reach the quarter-finals.”

Dickinson believes his side have nothing to lose.

“I don’t think anybody expects Scotland to win this match.

“But there’s no reason why we can’t go out there and do something special.”

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