Cotter proud of Scotland for claiming France scalp


Vern Cotter saluted the character of his Scotland side after they claimed a long-awaited win over France to ensure England have been crowned Six Nations champions.

Scotland had suffered nine defeats in a row against Les Bleus before Sunday's clash at Murrayfield, but ended that dismal sequence with a pulsating 29-18 victory.

A fine early try from captain Guilhem Guirado put France in front, but Stuart Hogg and Duncan Taylor scored in quick succession late in the first half before Gael Fickou went over to reduce Scotland's lead to 18-12 at half-time.

The impressive Hogg produced a sublime overhead pass to allow Tim Visser to score the only try of the second half and Greig Laidlaw took his tally with the boot to 11 points as Scotland sealed a first win over Les Bleus for a decade.

Scotland have now recorded back-to-back victories to go third in the table and head coach Cotter was full of praise for his players after they put paid to France's title hopes.

He told BBC Sport: "It was a tough game and we lost Finn [Russell to a head injury] early as well, so we lost our playmaker. They made up an early lead and I think we built the game well from there. 

"Our set-piece was great and we showed great character. I'm very proud of them. It's nice to get a win, as it's been 10 years since we beat them.

"I think that the game was built by the set-piece and we needed the scrum to do that. I thought the boy, even though they were under pressure at times, made good decisions and kept their heads."

Scotland finish their Six Nations campaign with a trip to face Ireland in Dublin next Saturday.