Seymour insists he did not enjoy seeing World Cup rivals struggle against France

Scotland were beaten 32-3 in Nice.

By Press Association Published: 22 August 2019 - 11.00am

Scotland wing Tommy Seymour insists he took no joy in seeing his World Cup rivals flop against France.

The Glasgow back watched through the cracks in his fingers as Gregor Townsend’s team were mauled by a rampant Les Bleus side in Nice last weekend.

Byron McGuigan and Darcy Graham got the nod to start on the flanks in the first of four warm-up clashes at the Allianz Riviera but could do nothing to prevent a 32-3 pasting.

Darcy Graham was one player who failed to take his chance
Darcy Graham was one player who failed to take his chance (David Davies/PA)

Their struggles could yet end up working in Seymour’s favour as he seeks to nail down his own seat on the plane to Japan.

Seymour’s inclusion for this Saturday’s Murrayfield rematch is one of 14 changes Townsend has made to his line-up having warned those who missed their opportunity to impress on the Cote D’Azur they may not get another chance.

But there was no sense of schadenfreude as Seymour insisted it will take a collective effort for the Dark Blues to succeed at the World Cup, even if it means he does not make the cut.

“I genuinely don’t think of it that way,” he replied after being asked if he has secretly smiled as his wing rivals struggled. “I’m a Scotland player but I’m also a Scotland fan.

“We’re looking to go out to the World Cup and perform well, get out of our group and make noise on a world stage. As far as I’m concerned we need the best 31 guys, whether I’m involved or not, to go out there and represent Scotland.

“If I get an opportunity I’m going to go out and do everything I can to put us in a better place but the guys that went out at the weekend don’t lack any of that either. They’re all striving to the same goal.

“From a selfish point of view I certainly want to go to the World Cup, it’s a massive goal of mine.

“But do I hope that other players have to have downfalls? Certainly not, because it doesn’t help me, it doesn’t help them and you need a positive culture to get in the best place possible.

“If you have 40 individuals running around, trying to do things solely for themselves then we are never going to be a good team.”

“ As far as I'm concerned we need the best 31 guys, whether I'm involved or not, to go out there and represent Scotland”
- Tommy Seymour

Scotland have now gone five games without a win and Seymour admits that run of woe must end before they set off for the Far East.

“Momentum is as important as anything, you want to go out to Japan with the idea you’ve performed well in these warm-up games,” he said.

“Obviously the weekend was our first hit at it after a long pre-season. Moving forward we get three more opportunities as a squad and we’ll certainly be looking to build momentum, those feelings of positivity moving onto Japan.

“When you get out there you’re going to look for every advantage you can get. Momentum and a positive mindset and how you play is certainly an important part of that.”

Seymour is confident Scotland can fare better against France this weekend
Seymour is confident Scotland can fare better against France this weekend (Jane Barlow/PA)

The first opportunity to get the ball rolling again comes this weekend as they take on France again at Murrayfield and Seymour believes Scotland are ready to take out their frustrations on Jacques Brunel’s outfit.

“I’m massively confident,” he declared “I think this group of individuals is as talented as I have been involved in.

“I’m confident we can go out and produce one of the best performances that we’ve seen because I have confidence in the guys around me, the management group and the boys that will pull on the jersey.

“There’s never going to be a lack of confidence or a lack of positivity in regards to what we can do on a weekend where we go out and perform at our best.

“But that’s the key – going out and performing at our top capacity because if we don’t do that then we know you’re not going to get results in international rugby, but I’m certainly confident in this group of individuals.”