Euan Murray’s return to Scotland could work against rock-bottom Newcastle


Kenny Logan believes Murray’s extended stay in New Zealand could worsen Newcastle’s dismal Premiership start.


By Tom Reynolds, Sportsbeat, 0870 445 0156

KENNY LOGAN believes Euan Murray’s return to the Scotland side this weekend could work against rock-bottom Newcastle – by extending his stay in New Zealand.

While the Falcons worry about their dismal Premiership start, Murray has been restored to the Scotland front row for the must-win clash with the Auld Enemy, England, on Saturday.

The 31-year-old missed their agonising 13-12 reverse against Argentina as he doesn’t play on Sunday’s due to his religious beliefs.

Widely accepted as the best scrummager in the Scotland pack, Murray’s inclusion was a no-brainer for coach Andy Robinson after his front-row endured a tough time against the uncompromising Pumas.

With the Scots lacking the creative flair of their rivals, Murray and co. will favour an arm wrestle up front rather than a feast of flowing rugby in Eden Park on Saturday.

And with that in mind 70-cap Scotland winger Logan believes the return of Murray could see the Falcons denied his services for a little while longer with the quarter-final berth, a win could bag them.

A win with an eight-point margin would all-but guarantee them a spot in the knock-out phases and Logan said: “Euan Murray back is really important for such a big game against England and for what is going to be a really difficult game.

“His religion and his beliefs are something that you have got to respect but at the same time I think the fans will like to see him back and the England guys will know how good a scrummager he is.

“He’s played against Georgia and really dominated them and they are a really good scrummaging pack so it’s great to have him back.

“People like Euan can really make a big impact to the team in what is going to be a big game.”

If Murray and co. fails in their England victory quest they will become an unwanted statistic in the annals of Scottish history – the first side ever to fail to make it out of the pool stages.

But Logan believes the Newcastle tight-head can make sure the unthinkable doesn’t occur, adding: “He is the sort of player that can make those big tackles and have a huge influence on the scrum and put a lot of pressure on England and that is what we will need to do because it is going to be a very hard game.”

Heroes Rugby Challenge, Saturday 3 December 2011 at Twickenham Stadium, kicks off at 1630. Ticket prices start at £30 for adults and are available through Ticketmaster or by calling 0844 847 2492

Related Articles