Laidlaw seals last-gasp Scotland win


Greig Laidlaw landed a penalty with the last kick of the game to seal a hard-fought 19-16 victory for Scotland against Argentina at Murrayfield.

The home skipper held his nerve to split the posts and secure his side's fifth win in their last six meetings with the Pumas.

Neither team managed to score a try in a disjointed and error-strewn first half, but the game exploded into life after the break, with Matias Orlando finding the line to put the visitors ahead, before Maitland hit back for Scotland soon after.

Although they never came close to matching the quality of their performance against Australia last weekend, the Scots did at least manage to seal the win on this occasion despite Laidlaw missing a penalty and Finn Russell also failing to land a drop-goal inside the last ten minutes.

Nicolas Sanchez, meanwhile, celebrated winning his 50th Test cap by kicking 11 of his side's points but Daniel Hourcade's team were just unable to hang on after tiring in the latter stages.

And Laidlaw's clinching kick could have wider implications, with the win set to take Scotland above Argentina in the world rankings, which could affect the respective teams' seeding at next year's draw for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Scotland opened up an early six-point lead courtesy of two penalties from Laidlaw, scrumhalf Sanchez getting Argentina on the scoreboard with a long-range penalty just before the break.

Sanchez duly landed another penalty to make it 6-6 early in the second half, before the first try of the game finally arrived in the 50th minute.

Juan Martin Hernandez's pinpoint cross-kick to the left corner bounced kindly for Orlando and the centre powered his way past two defenders to find the line.

Within five minutes, however, Scotland responded in kind, as Huw Jones' strength and footwork enabled him to burst through the Argentinean line and flick out a perfectly-timed pass to Maitland, who slid over in the corner to claim his fourth Test try.

Laidlaw's superb touchline conversion levelled things up again at 13-13, but the front row changes made by Vern Cotter then seemed to prove costly for the Scots as their scrum disintegrated, yielding a penalty which Sanchez stroked over to make it 16-13.

A fourth successful kick from Laidlaw ensured the two sides went into the final 10 minutes locked at 16-16 and he repeated the feat right at the death after Juan Manuel Leguizamon was penalised for having no arms in the tackle.