Logan lauds Hogg and tips Scotland for strong Six Nations challenge

Kenny Logan believes Stuart Hogg is "probably the best full-back Scotland have ever had" and is hopeful the Glasgow Warriors star can help his country to mount a stiff challenge for Six Nations glory.

Scotland, who face Wales in the competition's opening game on Saturday, are viewed as serious challengers for this year's title, with a number of key players approaching the tournament in good form.

Former wing Logan - capped 70 times by Scotland between 1992 and 2003 - is "very positive" over the chances of Gregor Townsend's adventurous side after they thumped Australia 53-24 in their final November international and came agonisingly close to beating world champions New Zealand.

And Hogg - the Six Nations Player of the Championship in each of the last two seasons - has been tipped to make a big impact following his eye-catching return from injury in the Warriors' European Champions Cup win over Exeter Chiefs on January 20.

"He's probably the best full-back Scotland have ever had and that's a big call when you've got people like Chris Paterson, Gavin Hastings and Andy Irvine," Logan, speaking courtesy of Robert Walters, told Omnisport.

"He played last week - his first game of the season - against Exeter and was totally outstanding.

"He's an all-round rugby player; he's got a big kick on him; his defence was probably the one thing people thought was his weakness, but he's worked hard on it and it's one of his strengths now; he's stronger but he also looks lean at the same time, and his pace is outstanding.

"His ability to bring players into the game and his decision-making are also real strengths and when he's on the ball you tend to panic, because you don't know whether he's going to kick it, or go round you or pass it."

Assessing Scotland's Six Nations chances and that vitally important opening game against Wales, Logan added: "I'm very positive. Last year was a positive year. Gregor has come in and I think he's definitely lifted the team to another level, with some key players who have been playing really well.

"First-up games are always key, because if you don't get off to a [good] start, it's very hard to get anything out of the Six Nations.

"I think we can beat Wales in Cardiff. There's a fair chance it will be a close game, but I think if Wales play loosely it will suit us because Scotland want to play a very fast game. The key thing for me is that Scotland are going to go down there with a lot of confidence."

Defending champions England and Ireland will begin the tournament as favourites, but Logan said: "I don't think there'll be a Grand Slam winner this year.

"It's going to be a great championship, a very close championship. Last year it was close and I think it will be as close again this year."

 

- Kenny Logan was speaking at Robert Walters' Six Nations preview evening. For more information visit www.robertwalters.co.uk

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