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Stuart Hogg has big hopes for 2017 with Scotland

Published 27/11/2016

Scotland's Stuart Hogg says they will fly in 2017
Scotland's Stuart Hogg says they will fly in 2017

Stuart Hogg reckons 2017 is finally Scotland's time to shine in the RBS 6 Nations.

The Dark Blues full-back is full of hope for next year's campaign after rounding off 2016 on a high with an encouraging autumn series.

The Scots followed up a narrow loss to Australia with back-to-back wins over Argentina and Georgia.

Now after repeated let downs in the Six Nations, Hogg believes Vern Cotter's team can look to register a minimum of three wins for the first time since 2006.

The Glasgow flyer - who scored twice during the six-try 46-16 demolition of the Georgians at Rugby Park on Saturday - said: "Is this our time? I believe so. We'll just keep concentrating on ourselves, we'll keep grounded, we'll keep working hard.

"We will look at teams in depth and where opportunities lie in attack and defence.

"Hopefully everyone can stay fit and come Six Nations time we'll all have some good form under our belt. That will increase competition.

"We believe we can win every single game. If you go in with any other mentality you'll get beat.

"We fully believe each other and will back the coaching staff over the hill and back. We're ready."

Scotland end the year with more victories than losses for the first time since 2010 and Hogg believes the crop of youngsters such as Zander Fagerson, Allan Dell, Magnus Bradbury and Ali Price now striving to break into Vern Cotter's team offers increased hope for the future.

"I think we're in a very good place," he said. "We worked incredibly hard over these last couple of years to get where we are.

"We are excited and need to make the most of every opportunity we get in a Scotland jersey.

"Can we get achieve something like three wins in the Six Nations? I believe so. We've got good depth in out team. Everyone is competing for places which makes training a lot, lot better.

"We're playing some fantastic rugby out there and when we get good set-piece ball and get on the front foot, we look dangerous.

"We will keep grounded, keep working hard and when the Six Nations comes along we will fire into it.

"Ireland are first up and will be a massive challenge. They are playing some fantastic rugby at the moment and I'm excited already.

"We know what we're capable of. It was unfortunate that we didn't get that win against Australia but we learned from it.

"We could have slowed the ball down in the final stages but a week later against Argentina we proved we had taken it on board. We used some zigzag patterns and milked some penalties which ultimately helped us win the game.

"We're a fairly young team through out but we've got a couple of old heads who keep us on our toes.

"We're in a good place. We'll continue to learn, we'll continue to work hard and hopefully we'll continue to improve."

Hogg had the crowd in Kilmarnock leaping to their feet as he scored a sensational solo try against Georgia.

His opening touchdown saw him chase after his own kick before out-sprinting the visiting defence but he admits the move could easily have ended in disaster.

"It was pure luck," said the full-back, who is now just two caps short of his half-century. "I'm not going to lie about it. It was a little chip and chase and the ball bounced my way. If it hadn't I think they could have ended up under our posts.

"You need that luck in international rugby so we will take it.

"I love scoring tries. I could have scored a couple for Glasgow the other week but knackered that up a wee bit.

"For the second try, Ali Price took a quick tap and passed the boy outside. He had Rory Hughes supporting on the outside and he then put me in down in the corner. All I had to do was be in the right place at the right time. The other boys did the business for me so I thanked them both at the end."

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