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Barclay ready to punish France

Flanker John Barclay is determined Scotland should take their frustrations out on France to resurrect their RBS 6 Nations campaign.

Barclay is set to be restored to the starting line-up for Sunday's match with the World Cup runners-up, albeit in a less than familiar blindside role, with Ross Rennie continuing at openside.

Barclay, who is poised to win his 35th cap, said: "It's been a frustrating few weeks personally and for the team. There are a lot of frustrated and annoyed guys kicking around, slightly fed up with how things have gone. That's the nature of the championship - you have to dust yourself off and get on with it. "

He added: "We've got a big game against the French and there's no point dwelling on what could have been in the weeks gone by.

"We're not far away and that's what makes it so frustrating in the last few weeks."

Familiar failings contributed to Scotland's losses to England and Wales and Andy Robinson's men are seeking to avoid an extension of their four-match losing streak with just a second win over France in Six Nations competition.

Barclay's chance has come after Gloucester's Alasdair Strokosch suffered a fractured hand in Cardiff and despite being in the unfamiliar number six jersey, the 25-year-old expects to play in his usual manner against Les Bleus.

Barclay added: "I'd never been on the bench before. It was a new experience and I obviously want to start, but I enjoyed being able to come on and make an impact.

"I've been happy with my involvement when I've come off the bench so to get the opportunity is great for me.

"I'm not going to change the way I play the game. It's slightly different at the set-piece and things like that, but from my point of view it will be a pretty similar player you'll see."


From Belfast Telegraph