SCRUM Web Editor Gary Heatly caught up with Tom Brown to look back on his amazing day in a Scotland jersey in 2012:
The last time Scotland won in Australia is a day Tom Brown will never forget – and the Edinburgh Rugby man believes the current crop have what it takes to win down under once again on Saturday.
Gregor Townsend’s side are taking on the Wallabies in Sydney in the second match of the summer tour and for Brown memories have been flooding back of the 9-6 win in Newcastle, New South Wales back in 2012.
The rain was lashing down and by the time the game kicked off conditions were horrendous.
Winger Brown, then 22, had been called into Andy Robinson’s squad after a great first full pro season with Edinburgh in 2011/12.
With Tim Visser not eligible to represent Scotland until the following week against Fiji, Brown was named among the replacements for the encoder with Australia, but was on the pitch before half-time.
“Just to be named in the squad for the tour was unexpected for me because although I had been playing pretty well for Edinburgh there were quite a few good wingers about,” he recounts.
“As a young guy I was just taking everything in and to be named on the bench for that game was amazing.
“Midway through the first half Sean Lamont looked like he had picked up a knock and I was sent down to the dead ball area to warm up.
“When we were down there I was called back towards the halfway line and I realised that my chance had come. The run back to the halfway line seemed to last forever, but once I got there I just focused and got ready to come on.
“I played a couple of minutes before the break and then the whole second half. I was suddenly playing against world stars that I had watched on TV before and the conditions kept getting worse and as a back three myself, Joe Ansbro and Stuart Hogg were tested under the high ball quite a lot.
“As the game entered the closing stages it was 6-6 and when we won a kickable penalty we were all hoping that wee Greig [Laidlaw] could do it. Of course he is such a good kicker and we won 9-6.
“The celebrations were mental and everyone was jumping up and down. Of course everyone remembers Ansbro and Al Strokosch clashing heads in the excitement – that has become more famous than the win!
“To date that is my only Scotland cap, but what a great trip it was and the guys went on to defeat Fiji and Samoa to compete a successful trip.
“They also played a trick on me by telling me to look after the trophy from the Australia game all the way back to the UK. I was carrying this heavy box from flight to flight, putting it in the hold and it was generally a nuisance. Then when we got home the guys opened the box and it was filled to the brim with towels – the trophy had travelled another way!”
Brown, now 27, plays in the same Edinburgh team as Scotland squad members like WP Nel, Ross Ford, Ben Toolis and Damien Hoyland and he is looking forward to watching them take on Australia again.
“The guys had a good 6 Nations and now under new Head Coach Gregor Townsend the squad that headed out on tour looked strong,” Brown said.
“Obviously going to Australia and winning at any time is pretty tough, but I think the lads will be excited about the match and we did it five years ago so hopefully that spurs them on.”
Scotland team from that great win in 2012
Hogg; Ansbro, De Luca, Scott, Lamont; Laidlaw, Blair; Grant, Ford, Murray, Kellock, Gray, Strokosch, Rennie, Barclay. Subs: Brown for Lamont (39), Cusiter for Blair (64). Not used: Lawson, Welsh, Ryder, Vernon, Weir.
Tom Brown is pictured in 2012 by David Gibson/FOTOSPORT
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