Rugby World Cup: Scotland prepare for Ireland opener with shampoo-soaked balls
Last Updated: 16/09/19 2:53pm
Scotland have been training with balls soaked in shampoo ahead of Sunday's World Cup opener against Ireland.
Gregor Townsend's team are preparing for slippery conditions in Yokohama this weekend, with a torrential thunderstorm forecast.
Assistant coach Mike Blair believes the unique tactics could help the team not only deal with the weather but also rising temperatures, which have reached 33 degrees at their Nagasaki training base.
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"We had the shampoo and conditioner out over the ball when we were back in Edinburgh," said Blair.
"Since coming here to Nagasaki it's mainly just been water because the sweat is more of an issue.
"The sweat is difficult to deal with. The conditions here in Nagasaki have been tough with the heat.
"Yesterday it said there was a 100 per cent chance of rain [on Sunday] and today it says a 50 to 60 per cent chance, which means it wasn't a 100 per cent chance the day before!
"So there will be a drop in temperature but difficult conditions to play in.
"It is good they have been training in the heat here, so they will be able to adapt to that as well."
Scotland have lost six of their last seven Tests against Ireland, and a downpour on Sunday could favour their opponents, but Blair insists they have a plan to deal with the No 1-ranked side in the world.
"In every game we go in with different strategies depending on who we are playing and what the conditions are," he added.
"We have got a lot of personnel in our team who are very good in [wet] conditions like that as well.
"We are known as a team who want to play a lot of rugby and move the ball around quickly, and we feel very comfortable doing that.
"But we also feel we have got guys in the squad who are capable of playing in different conditions as required."