Ryan Wilson to miss remainder of Six Nations with knee injury

Rory Best- Six Nations champions Ireland are feeling the pressure says captain Rory Best ahead of Scotland match

Ireland coach Joe Schmidt is confident playmaker Johnny Sexton will return for the reigning Six Nations champions to "kick on" with the defence of their title against Italy in Rome on February 24.

He was as frustrated as anyone with the 22-13 defeat to Ireland but immediately focused on that encounter with the country he has made his adopted home at the Stade France, where Scotland haven't tasted victory since 1999.

Scotland badly needed some points but turned down a simple three for a quick tap by Russell and the Irish defence swarmed to force a turnover inside their own five metre line.

Scotland skipper Greig Laidlaw later questioned some of the decisions from French referee Romain Poite. In the second we took the foot off the gas, allowed them into the game and they took control. "If we were able to replicate that in the second half I think we'd be here with a win", Townsend told reporters.

"They're obviously disappointed, the effort the players put into the first-half was outstanding, how they implemented the game plan we worked on all week and put Ireland under pressure", he said.

Swashbuckling and incisive in the first half - especially when star fly-half Finn Russell intercepted, burst clear and superbly set up Sam Johnson for a galvanizing try - Scotland lost composure after the break, and a series of unforced errors and penalties gave Ireland the initiative. We want to be better.

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"What was important was to get the win, and while we have to rely on other teams, we are back in there". 'Just that final piece, the execution off our set-piece, which has been really good, that fell off the jigsaw today and that's my fault.

"A game of rugby is a lot of things, it's the defense battle that you have to do, the contact battle, the kicking game is so important and the pressure we put on Ireland's kicks, I think we won those battles", he added.

"I'll be fine if I have to go back to Racing and play during the Championship's week off".

"The first half showed how good we can be". 'He's sore, very sore, ' said Townsend.

"He just has to be a little bit selfish and look after himself by giving it a fraction earlier than he ordinarily would, because he is 33 and because we need him more than ever in the World Cup".

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