Jump to main content


Paterson to Lead The Scots.

Paterson to Lead The Scots.

New Scotland rugby coach Matt Williams has appointed the non-smoking, non-drinking utility back Chris Paterson to captain the team in the upcoming Six Nations tournament

New Scotland rugby coach Matt Williams (pictured) has appointed the non-smoking, non-drinking utility back Chris Paterson to captain the team in the upcoming Six Nations tournament.

Paterson, who will be 26 next month, was one of Scotland’s few
successes in
the World Cup where they were fortunate to make the quarter-finals
but comes
as some surprise as experienced hooker Gordon Bulloch had been
paraded in
front of the media at the Six Nations launch on Wednesday.

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

Williams, who replaced Ian McGeechan after the World Cup, said
Paterson was a role model for every Scot.

“Chris is an outstanding player, assured of his
position,” said former Leinster Lions coachWilliams,
“His character as a man and his conduct as a non-smoker and
non-drinker –
but still with a great sense of humour – is a great example for the
team and
for the nation as someone we can look up to.”

Williams was at pains to point out that Paterson and Bulloch – who
will be
vice-captain – would be like a partnership.

“Chris and Gordon will captain the side in the next 12
months. We see it as
a partnership. They have a series of lieutenants on the field around
them who
will be part of the leadership group.”

Paterson made the first of his 40 appearances against Spain in the
World Cup and has scored 210 points, while he has starred at both
winger and
then fly-half when switched there during the World Cup by McGeechan
after both
Gregor Townsend and Gordon Ross failed to impress.

Bulloch is Scotland’s most capped hooker since making his debut in
with 58 caps – scoring four tries – and the 28-year-old was also a
British and
Irish Lion tourist to Australia in 2001.

Meanwhile Matt Williams is banking on
lateral thinking helping his side in this season’s RBS Six Nations.

The Australian, brought in to succeed Ian McGeechan following
struggle to reach the World Cup quarter-finals last year, accepts
financially the team will always find it tough to match the likes of
champions England, but he insists that Scotland can nevertheless
compete with
rugby’s major powers.

“I don’t believe that the team and the coaches in the past
were given the
resources to compete against the great teams… It was like a
boxer in a heavyweight division,” Williams told reporters on

“We want the opportunity to stand toe-to-toe with the
greats,” added
Williams, of a Scotland
team that
finished fourth in last season’s Six Nations.

“It is really exciting that England are now the world
champions. What
players want is to test themselves against the best in the world.
The great days are when you take on great teams and beat them…
what you remember for the rest of your life.”

And Williams insisted money alone was not the answer. “It’s
not just
funding. We are working on a close relationship with the Scottish
Institute of
Sport in Stirling, where we have been training.”

Williams, 43, added: “We are never going to match the giants
for money; we
are not asking for that. There’s a lot of other ways to skin the cat.

“We have three professional teams who we have some influence
over and we
are adding resources to them in terms of coaching and technical
advice which
benefits them as well as us.

“What we are doing is exactly what Ireland have done, it’s
what Australia
did. It’s not rocket science,” explained Williams.

Former Emerging Wallabies coach Williams hit the headlines when
soon after
his appointment he called for players seeking Scotland selection to
be based

“There are obvious financial difficulties in Scotland. But at
this World
Cup we had 50 percent of players not based in Scotland – we can’t
compete at
the next World Cup if that is still the case,” he explained.

Since the Australia showpiece, Scotland have lost five players to
international retirement including record cap holder and stand-off
scrum-half and former captain Bryan Redpath and wing Kenny

But Williams, who insisted he had not encountered any
“negativity” since
becoming the first foreigner to coach Scotland, put his trust in the
rising stars.

“We’ve got some really exciting young players – Nikki Walker
(wing), Graeme
(centre) and Chris Cusiter (scrum-half).
“The trick is that you don’t want to throw a young man in and
burn him so
he loses his confidence but he has to be blooded.”

And Williams pleaded for patience, saying his team should not be
judged on
results alone.

“We need to make sure we put a process in place so that these
young guys
can succeed. Success for them might not necessarily be always scoring
points than the opposition.

“Now we always want to win but we want these young guys to
focus on
processes. We’ve got a very experienced forward pack that can cope
with any
international team. We’ve got to build our game around those guys and
these young guys through.”

Meanwhile Williams proved that his diplomatic skills were up to
the job
when he neatly side-stepped the issue of whether Scotland’s theme
song, Flower
of Scotland,
would be replaced by Highland Cathedral because of the
‘anti-English’ lyrics.

“It’s not our decision. Waltzing Matilda (the unofficial
Australian anthem)
is about an itinerant thief who commits suicide.
If we start worrying about the content of our songs we could
be in serious