Scotland get inspired by motivational guru

The influence of Israeli motivational guru Yehuda Shinar, who was unveiled earlier this week as the newest member of the Scotland rugby team’s backroom staff, was already evident yesterday as the build-up to Saturday’s Calcutta Cup clash at Twickenham gathers pace.

Shinar, who worked with the English rugby team during their World Cup victory in 2003, and more recently with the Scottish swimming team during last year’s Commonwealth Games, has spent 20 years researching what it is that makes a ‘winner’.

The core premise of his teachings is that success in life is built upon the ability to ‘think correctly under pressure’.

It is clearly a theme which has hit home as far as Chris Paterson is concerned.

“We have to be clear and concise in our decision-making,” said the Scotland captain, when asked what his team must do to record their first away win over England in 24 years.

“On Saturday we’ll have some very important decisions to make early on – during the first 10 to 15 minutes – and we have to get them right. I’m sure we will.

“There’s no point predicting what may happen. You have to control what will happen and know what you can make happen – and that’s what our game is all about.

“If our game is right then we feel we can put England under enough pressure to stay with them and hopefully get a victory.

“We know we can win if we get our game right, if we get our decisions clear and concise – and if we have a bit of luck, just like we did last year.

“We’re all very excited. The players have been told to spend the next two days thinking about their role, and they have also been told to get excited about what is going to happen.”

Paterson added he expects the experience of beating England at Murrayfield last year to act as a spur as his team attempt go one step further this week, by capturing a rare away victory over the world champions.

“A lot of our players have been involved during difficult times for Scotland, and a taste of success like we had last year can have a huge beneficial effect,” said Paterson.

“It drives you on to experience that feeling again, and to experience it away from home when the stakes are even higher.

“We’ve got a confident team and we thoroughly believe in what we are trying to do. We are also a team that tasted a wee bit of success last year, and that means that we now know that beating England is an attainable goal.”

With a new coach and a drastically re-jigged starting XV, England are a bit of an unknown quantity going into this match.

But Paterson said that this is not a significant concern, pointing out all the top teams in world rugby are constantly evolving.

“A good coach will always develop his team, and good players are always developing their game, so they are probably no more of an unknown quantity than anyone else,” Paterson said.

“But when you’ve got 22 men and a full coaching staff expecting anything, and prepared to deal with anything, that puts you in a strong position.”

365 Digital

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