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Rugby World Cup: Laidlaw is calling on Scotland to step up against Samoa

By Andy Newport

Scotland skipper Greig Laidlaw has issued a rallying call to his Dark Blues troops after demanding the final push which clinches a Rugby World Cup quarter-final slot.

Victory over Samoa in Newcastle tomorrow will send Vern Cotter's side into the knockout rounds for the first time since 2007.

"We are extremely motivated," he said. "We players are desperate to win this match as we want to be in the World Cup quarter-finals. We've worked very hard to come from where we were to get to where we are at the moment. Now we need one more push this weekend.

"We need to put the fact we are regarded as favourites to one side and just look at Samoa. I still think they are a dangerous team.

"Maybe the fact they have nothing to play for will make them slightly loose, but if we defend properly we feel there will be opportunities for us to attack.

"They have dangerous individuals and we will be on guard to make sure we cover up. We'll give respect to Samoa but I feel if we get our part right we'll put ourselves in the best position to win the game."

Scotland: S Hogg (Glasgow); S Maitland (London Irish), M Bennett (Glasgow), M Scott (Edinburgh), T Seymour (Glasgow), F Russell (Glasgow), G Laidlaw (Capt, Gloucester); A Dickinson (Edinburgh), R Ford (Edinburgh), W Nel (Edinburgh), R Gray (Castres), J Gray (Glasgow), R Wilson (Glasgow), J Hardie (unattached), D Denton (Edinburgh).

Replacements: F Brown (Glasgow), G Reid (Glasgow), J Welsh (Newcastle Falcons), T Swinson (Glasgow), J Strauss (Glasgow), H Pyrgos (Glasgow), P Horne (Glasgow), S Lamont (Glasgow).

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