Rugby World Cup
Brown targets Georgian giants
September 13, 2011
Brown talks with the media ahead of the clash with Georgia © Getty Images
Scotland vice-captain Kelly Brown believes it is Georgia who should be wary of playing against a monster pack in Wednesday's World Cup Pool B clash in Invercargill.
Brown moves from flanker to No.8 as one of four players to be retained from the XV which began the unconvincing 34-24 win over Romania on Saturday. Georgia are believed to possess more forward power than Romania and have the talismanic figure of Mamuka Gorgodze, also known as Gorgodzilla, in their back row.
But 29-year-old Saracens back row Brown says Scotland have their own formidable physical specimens in the pack which Georgia should be concerned about. Brown, who is 6ft 4in and 16st 10lb, said: "Their pack are going to pose a very tough challenge, but I have full confidence in our pack.
"If you look at the size of some of the boys we've got, we've got some big units. It's going to be a massive test but I'm very much looking forward to it."
Prop Allan Jacobsen and Brown were the only forwards to be retained following the win over Romania, Scotland head coach Andy Robinson stressing the changes were due to the proximity of the matches, rather than the opening performance.
They will be joined by British Lions prop Euan Murray, who weighs in at 18st 9lb, the 6ft 8in, 19st 9lb Jim Hamilton and his fellow second row Nathan Hines, who stands at 6ft 7in and tips the scales at 18st 7lb, not to mention flanker Alasdair Strokosch, who Robinson says is a master of the "dark arts".
"We expect a hugely physical challenge - they have got some huge forwards - but it's a challenge that we're very much looking forward to," Brown said. "We need to physically impose ourselves and when the chances arise we have to attack them. Against Romania we scored four tries and got the win, but we know we have to improve."
Invercargill is the World Cup's most southerly destination and has been hit by wild weather this week - low temperatures, high winds and sleet - which could impact on the match at an exposed Rugby Park Stadium.
Brown is confident Scotland can front up in the forwards and have the backs - marshalled by scrum-half and captain Rory Lawson and fly-half Dan Parks - to cope in any conditions. The former Glasgow Warriors back row added: "Depending on the conditions we may have to change our game plan slightly.
"But if you look at our side we've got a very big, strong forward pack and our backs can throw the ball around, but we also have some big backs and a nine and 10 that can control any game."
Fullback Rory Lamont can expect to be tested if it is blowing a gale. The 28-year-old Toulon back was fielding high balls in swirling winds from Parks at the final session, but is unfazed by the elements.
"It's just the same as any Six Nations game in Edinburgh," he said. "We've got to play the tactics right - if we're playing into the wind we're going to have to play a running game and in the other half use that wind to get good territory.
"We're always looking to play an expansive game, but the conditions are going to dictate the way we play. If the wind is similar there's probably going to be two sets of tactics for each half."
Lamont, who was the only substitute to remain on the replacements' bench during the Romania match, is set to win his 26th cap, but has been hindered by injury in the last couple of seasons.
He hopes to take his chance to impress, with Scotland's next fixture coming a week on Sunday against Argentina in Wellington. Lamont said: "It's been a while since I've played and Chris Paterson's been outstanding.
"I know for me to get in the starting team I'm going to have to have a very good game. But I'm not worrying about future selections, I'm just looking to do my job for the team and get the win."
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