2013 Six Nations – Scotland vs Wales Predictions

Despite both sides losing their opening matches in the championship, both Scotland and Wales still have a shot at winning the 2013 Six Nations title if they manage to win out and wait for the tournament leaders to slip up.

History says that there’s not really a question about what we should expect from the encounter – Wales have won the last five matches between the sides, including twice in Murrayfield, where Scotland clinched their previous win over the Welsh in 2007. In all it’s been only one win in nine years for Scotland against these rivals.

But, maybe, possibly, times are changing. For the first time since 2001, thanks to a nice, soft, home scheduling, Scotland have won consecutive matches in the tournament, beating Italy without a problem and then Ireland in a more resolute performance, with Greig Laidlaw kicking all the points for the Scots.

Despite not scoring in the previous match, Stuart Hogg has been, arguably, the best performer in the tournament so far at fullback, as the 20 years old Warriors player is looking for a Lions berth, despite downplaying his chances in a recent interview. Along with Alex Cuthbert of Wales, they are the only two players to score two tries so far in the tournament.

Scotland are still making a few changes to the lineup that beat Ireland 12-8: Duncan Weir will get his first ever start at fly-half next to Laidlaw, while Euan Murray returns to tight-head prop for the match, while ack-row Ryan Wilson could make his debut from the bench.

For Wales, Sam Warburton will make his return to the lineup at openside flanker, but not as the captain, with Ryan Jones retaining the armband. Lock Alun-Wyn Jones is also handed a recall at the expense of Andrew Coombs. Paul James starts in place of Gethin Jenkins (injury) at the front-row, with Leigh Halfpenny, also kicking and playing for his #15 spot with the Lions, looking to continue his good form.

Prediction – Wales have improved since their opening day loss to Wales at home, countering with two wins on the road. Maybe the change to a grittier style has helped them regain their confidence. Scotland are confident as well, just slightly less talented than the Welsh, but seem to be on the verge of turning a new leaf in terms of their rugby success. Scotland win, by the slightest of margins.