Six nations: Ireland battles to victory over Scotland

Ireland players walk off the field after last weekend's comprehensive defeat by England

Ireland were dealt a chastening defeat by England in Dublin last weekend

"I thought he bossed the forwards as well in a game that was very hard, it really was about inches - every time you carried it was about getting an inch because that's all you were getting".

Their scrum was excellent, while their lineout functioned brilliantly despite the loss of Devin Toner and, while their attack was stodgy, it functioned just enough for them to get the three tries they needed. "We've got to dust ourselves off and get back to the things we do well", he added. They might have to change their tactics if they end up chasing the game because we're far enough ahead.

"It's one of those things that does happen if you take the ball to the line and if you are a hub of a player for us". There were two players involved but play went on.

Munster's Chris Farrell will make his first Test start in nearly a year when Ireland face Scotland this weekend, with Robbie Henshaw ruled out through a dead leg.

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CJ Stander, who suffered facial injuries last Saturday, is replaced by Leinster Jack Conan at Number 8.

"Robbie Henshaw has a dead leg and just hasn't recovered in time", said Schmidt.

Farrell has struggled with a string of knee injuries since his last Test appearance, a Man-of-the-Match showing in Ireland's 37-27 Six Nations victory over Wales in February 2018.

Having celebrated the mistake, the Irish forwards doubled-down by winninga scrum penalty but their momentum was stymied when Cian Healy knocked on. It's a knock on top of a knock. "But if you get another bump on it, it debilitates you quickly, and then you have to make another change".

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Asked whether Kearney would've been full-back if Henshaw was fit, Schmidt replied: "Probably once Garry Ringrose was ruled out it was going to be [a case of] trying to keep a little continuity as best we can and get as cohesive as we can in a short space of time".

That gave Scotland a 5m lineout, but Peter O'Mahony got up and slapped the ball back and Rory Best put it down. I've got to know him really well over the last six months when he's been down in Limerick so it's great for him to have bounced back [from throwing the intercept] the way he did.

The 36-year-old hooker - who along with his team-mates put in a considerably better performance than in the 32-20 defeat by the English in Dublin - said it had been a challenging week but they had come through.

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