Six Nations 2013: Scott Johnson pleased with Scotland resilience
Six Nations 2013: Scott Johnson heaps praise on Scotland for showing "great resolve" to edge to a 12-8 win against Ireland
Scott Johnson believes that if Scotland can put all the parts of their jigsaw together then they will be a force to be reckoned with after chalking up back-to-back Six Nations victories for the first time in 12 years.
The interim coach saw his side embark on a remarkable comeback, recovering from 8-0 down and having had barely a sniff of possession to seal a 12-8 win thanks to four Greig Laidlaw penalties.
Johnson was the first to admit that his side rode their luck, and Ireland were in dominant control in the first half but wasted a number of try-scoring opportunities while debutant fly-half Paddy Jackson missed three kicks.
It was a contrasting performance from the stylish victory over Italy but the spirit shown was just as pleasing for head coach Johnson, who called on his troops to combine the best bits of both of their Six Nations victories this campaign.
“It’s very pleasing because it showed a different side to us, it showed great resolve,” he said.
“It was a game where we probably should have been well behind at half-time but we showed great resolve and if we can combine that and the skill-set then we think we can do some damage.
“I’m happy but at the end of the day we go back to what we originally spoke about before the game and there is plenty of that performance that we need to improve on.
“I think sometimes the pressure builds on the opposition and they felt they should have been well in front on the scoreboard and that creates its own pressure.”
Johnson also issued a word of caution, admitting there remain numerous improvements to be made by his side.
He added: “You’ve got to ride your luck sometimes and what you can’t do is get too carried away. We’re proud of the victory but we’ve got to give a clear assessment of we need to improve.
“I think it’s just that there’s a balance of a few things and there are a few new people in the squad who are maturing at the right age, and we also rode our luck, but we took our opportunities and they didn’t.
“It was a game we probably shouldn’t have won but we did and we showed great spirit and heart and I like a team that has great spirit and great heart.”