Murray in action against Scotland at the 2019 World Cup

Ireland v Scotland: Conor Murray says record against Scots will not count for much in Pool B game

Murray in action against Scotland at the 2019 World CupMurray played in Ireland’s 27-3 win over Scotland in the 2019 World Cup group stages in JapanRugby World Cup: Pool B – Ireland v ScotlandVenue: Stade de France, Paris Date: Saturday, 7 October Kick-off: 20:00 BSTCoverage: Listen to live commentary on BBC Sounds, BBC Radio 5 Live & BBC Radio Ulster; follow text updates on the BBC Sport website and app

Ireland’s recent dominance over Scotland will not count for much when the sides battle for a place in the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals in Paris on Saturday, says Conor Murray.

The Irish have won 12 of their last 13 meetings with the Scots.

Coach Andy Farrell’s Ireland are favourites but Murray insists they are “certainly not overlooking” Scotland.

“All those games, especially in the last few years, they’ve been very tight fixtures,” said the scrum-half.

“Some of the scoreboards might read a little bit differently but genuinely Scotland are a top side and pose a lot of threats across the board.”

Ireland are coming off a rest week after securing a momentous victory over holders South Africa in Paris on 23 September, while Scotland set up a Pool B showdown with the world’s number one side by thumping Romania on Saturday.

Ireland, who have won their last 16 matches, will top the group if they avoid defeat, or lose by four points or fewer.

Scotland would go through and knock Ireland out with a victory which also denies the Irish a bonus point.

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The Scots prepared for Saturday’s match by running in 12 tries against Romania and Murray, who worked with Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend on the 2021 British and Irish Lions tour, says Ireland are wary of the Scottish attack.

“Having worked with Gregor a couple of years ago, their attacking game will cause a lot of stress and it’ll make sure we prepare really well, as good if not better as we did for South Africa,” added Munster’s Murray, who has 110 caps.

“It’s about turning the page now and realising we’re up against a top international side that have an awful lot to play for.

“I expect them to really test us in every department.

“That’s not just something we’re saying in the media. We’ve had huge battles with Scotland over the years, especially recently.

“We’re certainly not overlooking them. That might be the story outside but I can assure you it’s completely different here.”

Ireland have improved at ‘flipping the page’

Ireland comfortably overcame Scotland in the 2019 World Cup in Japan, winning 27-3 only to fall to a shock defeat by the hosts in their next game.

While Murray admits Ireland have been prone to dropping their performance levels after a big win in the past, he insists the team have improved when it has come to meeting the required standard in back-to-back games.

“A good few years ago we’d get a good one-off win and then the next week we’d drop off performance-wise,” said Murray.

“I think we’ve started properly addressing it about being consistent and nowadays this team is really good at flipping the page and focusing on what’s next.

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“People are talking about what’s down the line and knockout rugby and all that but genuinely within our four walls we’re talking about Scotland and that’s the next biggest challenge for us.

“We have a plan of where we want to go but it’s about doing the right thing now.”