Scotland boss Vern Cotter finds positives in thrashing by South Africa
Last Updated: 29/06/14 11:27am
Scotland head coach Vern Cotter said his inexperienced side still offered some positive signs for the future despite their 55-6 thrashing by South Africa.
The defeat was the first for Cotter since taking the role, following wins against the United States, Canada and Argentina on their summer tour.
And the New Zealander said the performance of a side without many of its Six Nations regulars was not truly reflected by the scoreline.
"It illustrated a lot of the things we are going to have to go away and work on to become competitive before the Rugby World Cup," he said.
"But honestly, much as we hate losing and especially by a score like that, there are some very positive things to come out of it.
But honestly, much as we hate losing and especially by a score like that, there are some very positive things to come out of it. Adam Ashe played his first game at 20, Grant Gilchrist has come in as captain and done exceptionally well. I think all the players have done well.
"Adam Ashe played his first game at 20, Grant Gilchrist has come in as captain and done exceptionally well. I think all the players have done well.
'If we take away what we gave South Africa and add more of what we tried to develop on the field, then we can improve.
"We have to keep doing the good things and take away the bad stuff we didn't do well. If we don't offer as many opportunities to the opposition as we did today then we can shift in the right direction.
Cotter added: "It was a brave effort, the guys never gave up, now it is a question of channelling energy and decision making in the right way."
Gilchrist also said his team-mates would be better for the experience of facing the Springboks away from home, despite conceding eight tries in Port Elizabeth.
"It was a tough game. We had a poor start and that is not what we wanted against South Africa," he said.
"We knew it would be tough but we started slowly and that did not help our cause. As the half went on we got better but it is disappointing.
"We prepared all week to go flying into them and did not go out there fearing anyone, we came out as a young squad aiming to prove ourselves.
"There were a lot of guys given an opportunity to do our best. Every time we pull on the jersey we aim to do it proud. We are bitterly disappointed with the result but there were aspects out there with the young squad that we can be proud of."
Springboks coach Heyneke Meyer also selected a new-look side, with the experience of Victor Matfield and Schalk Burger helping to compensate for the five uncapped players in the matchday squad.
"I am very, very proud of the guys," said Meyer
"The message we had given the guys was that we had to come back from last weekend (when they edged Wales 31-30).
"Though we made the mistakes, sometimes we played some awesome rugby. The Scots kept on firing but we held them out."