Six Nations: Duncan Weir revels in role of Scotland's Rome hero
Scotland's match-winner Duncan Weir was never worried about missing his last-gasp drop goal that beat Italy.
Last Updated: 23/02/14 7:15am
The Dark Blues finally snuffed out worries they would end up with this year's Six Nations wooden spoon with a 21-20 victory in Rome.
There was just 10 seconds left on the clock with the home side leading by two points when Weir kept his nerve in front of a 66,271-strong crowd at the Stadio Olimpico to plant the ball between the sticks and kick off jubilant Scottish celebrations.
And the Glasgow stand-off claimed he went into auto-pilot as he handed Scotland their first win of the championship.
He said: "It's the first time I have dropped a goal for Scotland and it has never been more important. I'm absolutely delighted.
"In those pressure moments you can only focus on your routine. I made sure I got my ball drop right and got a clean connection. I'm just so thankful it went over.
"I ran off celebrating, going off my head. It was an immense feeling.
"I had no doubts about taking it on. Chris Cusiter put it on a plate for me, on the right side of my body. The whole thing went perfectly."
However head coach Scott Johnson admitted he was not so confident.
"I've been watching him in training for the three weeks and he hasn't looked like kicking one," he joked.
"I was delighted for him, because his is a position that carries a lot of responsibility. I seen some growth in the lad and I'm so pleased for him."
The Scots' winning display was a huge improvement on their 20-0 humiliation at the hands of England a fortnight ago.
But there were still worries for Johnson after his team went in at the break 13-3 behind before the visitors to the Eternal City responded in style with a fine second-half blitz.
Johnson was delighted for his players but challenged them to build on the win by beating France at Murrayfield next month.
"Well it's certainly better than a loss for a boost," he said. "We can't get carried away with a win that could have gone the other way.
"We got a little bit of luck but we showed great resolve. But it won't mean a lot if we don't put on a show against France.
"There are things that we need to improve on, and I'm about consistency with this team. We've got to learn to win consistently, to compete consistently
"The criticism last week was deserved, we didn't play well. But we showed character today. On the back of a 10-2 penalty count I think we showed great character, but we need to execute a little bit better more often."
Italy coach Jacques Brunel praised the performance of stand-off Tommaso Allan, who was playing against the country he represented at youth level.
Allan, born in Vicenza to a Scottish father and Italian mother, was winning his sixth cap for for the Italians and scored 13 points, including a try.
Brunel said: "Tommy played as well as anyone in the team.
"He is only 20 years old and is playing in a tough position. He does not have a lot of experience but he has to keep playing if he wants to get that experience."