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Lamont wants rare win over France

Sean Lamont admits Scotland's eight-year wait for a win over France has gone on far too long.

The veteran Glasgow wing scored twice the last time the Scots triumphed over Les Bleus, a 20-16 victory at Murrayfield in 2006.

Since then, the hapless Dark Blues have suffered pain and misery against France.

But having gained confidence with their last-gasp win over Italy a fortnight ago, Lamont says Scotland must now look to end that humiliating run when the French return to Edinburgh on Saturday for the fourth fixture of this year's RBS 6 Nations.

He told Press Association Sport: "Yes it's been too long since we beat France. There have been times when we've pushed them close but inevitably we've let them off the hook.

"They're a great team whether or not they are on form at the time.They still have great individual players and when they gel together they are one of the better teams in Europe. They've got certainly a large squad to pick from and when they are on form. they really are dangerous.

"Obviously there's a big gulf, they have got seven wins out of the last eight years but I think at times we have pushed them closer than maybe that would suggest, but a lot of it's down to us.

"We've had times where we've been brilliant where we do all our jobs right and everything is correct. We get these victories, the big ones over Australia and South Africa so we know we can beat France, we've done it before.

"But we need to be super accurate, we need to be clean - that means no penalties and number one, we need to make our tackles in defence."

Lamont was at pains to stress the importance of Scotland maintaining discipline at the breakdown.

Scott Johnson's side have conceded 38 penalties from their three matches so far this year - more than any other side.

" Our penalty count has been a little poor," he said. "But it's not always our fault. Sometimes it's down to the referee but you've got to learn to deal with these things. You've got to be super clean and not to give any back-chat.

"If you do everything right and don't give the refs any reason to penalise you, it definitely makes it harder for the opposition. Unfortunately we've piled pressure on ourselves by not making our hits as dominant as they should be.

"We have given the opposition too many yards which puts us on the back foot in defence and, when that happens, you are more likely to dive over tackles. If you're over-eager it's an easy excuse to give penalties away. If the penalty is within kicking range, which is anything up to half way, then it's an easy three points."

Duncan Weir nailed a drop goal with 10 seconds left at the Stadio Olimpico to snatch victory from the Italians and spare Scotland the wooden spoon after a miserable start to the tournament.

But Lamont insists the Dark Blues have more work to do yet before they can say they have recovered fully from the drubbings dished out by Ireland and England.

"I wouldn't say it was the turning point," he said. "It was blooming good skill and Duncan absolutely nailed it. But it's one drop goal and one drop goal does not make us into a Six Nations-winning side. We need to back it up.

"We stole the win from Italy but it's done now so the new task is beating France and that's all we're focusing on this week.

" We are full of passion, full of pride and full of desire to win these games. When we're super clinical and do our job perfectly, that's when we can pull out some great performances. If we don't do that, then that's when the losses come."

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