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Scotland’s Hamish Watson admits frustration over talk about his size

Watson

“It is a tiny bit frustrating.”

Hamish Watson has admitted that he gets frustrated when people argue that he is too small to be a top-quality flanker.

The Scotland international was named as the player of the championship in the 2021 Six Nations and was last week named in the British and Irish Lions squad for this summer’s tour to South Africa.

Despite his recent performances, some still believe that Watson is too small to face the Springboks. While that certainly hasn’t affected his confidence, the Scot admitted on the BBC’s Rugby Union Weekly podcast that it does annoy him.

Hamish Watson.

“It’s not something I think about much. It doesn’t matter how much you weigh if you’ve still got the power and strength of someone who is a bit heavier,” Watson said.

“It is a tiny bit frustrating. It is a perception that is always going to be around in rugby no matter what you do. In other sports, dynamic positions are smaller people.”

Record Scottish Lions contingent.

Eight Scotland players were named in this year’s Lions squad by Warren Gatland, which is the biggest Scottish Lions contingent that there has ever been in the professional era.

The Scots performed quite well in this year’s Six Nations, claiming impressive wins against England in London and France in Paris, which surely helped several of those players’ causes.

Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend and Scotland defence coach Steve Tandy are both part of Gatland’s Lions coaching team for this year’s tour, and Watson acknowledged that may have made a difference when it came to tight selection decisions.

“It’s hard to believe that it wouldn’t have made a difference in 50/50 calls. I don’t think that just because Steve and Gregor are there it would mean way more boys have been picked,” Watson said.

“The fact that they know us off the field as well helps. These tours, it’s a long time to be away with each other, you need the right people.

“It’s hard to ignore the difference of two and eight but Scotland are in a lot better place than four years ago.”

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