Cronin shows how to play the modern Telfer way

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Wales A 22 Scotland A 32

Wales fielded nine full internationals to Scotland's five in yesterday's inaugural A-game between the countries at Swansea, but the experience that counted was that of the Scots' captain, Damian Cronin, who has more caps than the rest put together.

For Scotland to exploit the wind at their backs in the first half they needed possession and Del Boy supplied them so liberally that by the interval they had pushed impressively into a 21-point lead. Although the Welsh then set about reducing their deficit, it would have been an injustice if they had done so completely.

Their upwind performance had been too lamentable to warrant a full recovery, the sluggishness and general incoherence with which they played their rugby being at complete odds with modern trends as displayed by the Scots. Under Jim Telfer's tutelage, there is an identifiably Scottish way of playing at whatever level.

Scott Welsh, who sounds as if he has a foot in both camps, kicked a couple of early penalties for the Scots before Nick Broughton was put through by Brian Renwick at a short-range scrum.

When Derek Stark added a second Scottish try, Derrick Patterson and Peter Walton having done the creative work, you could not have anticipated any Welsh revival. But they came out belatedly battling at the start of the second half and within six minutes Mark Taylor had barged over Patterson for one try and Robin McBryde had fallen on a loose Scottish line-out tap for another.

Garan Evans later added a third try and for a few minutes Wales were within two points but Stark, a sprinter of some repute, was sent on a 65-yard run by Broughton for his second try and for the Welsh the game was up.

Wales A: Tries Taylor, McBryde, Evans; Conversions Davies 2; Penalty Davies. Scotland A: Tries Stark 2, Broughton; Conversion Welsh; Penalties Welsh 5.

WALES A: C Cormack (Pontypridd); S Hill (Cardiff), M Taylor (Swansea), M Wintle, G Evans (Llanelli); M Lewis (Bridgend), P John (Pontypridd); C Loader (Swansea), R McBryde (capt), S John (Llanelli), M Voyle (Newport), J Wakeford (Cardiff), M Workman (Newport), O Williams (Cardiff), M Williams (Pontypridd). Replacements: A Davies (Cardiff) for Lewis, 3.

SCOTLAND A: S Lang; C Glasgow (Heriot's FP), G Shiel (Melrose), R Eriksson (London Scottish), D Stark (Boroughmuir); S Welsh (Hawick), D Patterson (West Hartlepool); M Browne (Melrose), G Ellis (Currie), B Stewart (Edinburgh Academicals), D Burns (Boroughmuir), D Cronin (Bourges, capt), P Walton (Newcastle), B Renwick (Hawick), N Broughton (Melrose). Replacements: G Burns (Stewart's Melville FP) for Patterson, 56. Temporary substitute: S Nichol (Selkirk) for Eriksson, 56-64.

Referee: S Piercy (England).

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