Stuart Hogg: We had a lot of fun beating Italy

Scotland captain pleased to see smiles on faces but believes they could have scored even more.

Stuart Hogg: We had a lot of fun beating Italy SNS Group

Scotland captain Stuart Hogg hailed the team’s spirit as they dispatched Italy with a record-beating Six Nations scoreline.

The 52-10 final result was Scotland’s largest winning margin of the Six Nations era as the hosts ran riot against the porous Italian defence, scoring eight tries.

After dispiriting defeats to Wales and Ireland Hogg said it was important to get the players smiling again on the Murrayfield turf.

He said: “We had a lot of fun. There was a huge amount of energy throughout the whole week.

“We talked about starting the best way possible and we didn’t quite do that but we re-grouped well.

“Maybe at time we lacked that clinical edge but we had smiles on our faces and the best feeling ever is winning in a Scotland jersey.

“We got the backs on the ball with some space, the forwards dominated up front and that is what we are about.

“That’s is the kind of team that we want to show we are about.

Hogg started the match in an unfamiliar role at stand-off, as Finn Russell missed out with a concussion.

While the Exeter Chiefs man does not expect to be making regular appearances in the 10 jersey he said he wanted to make the most of the opportunity to try something new.

Hogg said: “Everyone in the back-line has been outstanding over the past two weeks and it made my job easier stepping in to an unknown position.

“I just tried to distribute to the best of my ability and make sure these boys had time and space on the ball.

“At times today it worked really quite well, other times not so much, but that’s something I can go back and analyse and maybe learn more about my game.”

Following the match, agreement was reached for Scotland stars who play for English Premiership clubs to be released for next Friday’s Six Nations match against France.

The game in Paris was rearranged after a covid outbreak in the France squad forced postponement of the original game but the new date was announced without assurances that Scotland players would be released from their clubs.

Six Nations chiefs said in a statement: “Six Nations Rugby are pleased to confirm that an agreement has been reached with Premiership Rugby for the release of Scottish players for the final rescheduled fixture of the 2021 Guinness Six Nations Championship, France v Scotland.

“Six Nations and Scottish Rugby would like to take this opportunity to thank all PRL club owners for their understanding and co-operation in these exceptional Covid affected circumstances.”

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