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Laidlaw: We should run out big winners

Greig Laidlaw believes his side are in line for a 15 to 20-point winning margin against Canada in Toronto today, so long as they can hammer home the advantages that have created a gap of eight places between the two sides in the world rankings.

The Scots rose two rungs to eighth with their 24-6 victory over the USA in Houston a week ago. On the same day, the Canadians squandered a 25-9 half-time lead against Japan in Vancouver and lost 34-25, a result that saw them drop to 16th place.

In fairness, Laidlaw did not volunteer the 15-20 point margin, but he agreed when the suggestion was put to the captain.

"I'm not a bookie, but I fancy Scotland tomorrow," the scrum-half admitted. "We had a good basis last week against the USA in tough conditions, but the conditions are more favourable this week.

"If our defence steps up to the plate again then I'd like to think we be would up there."

The weather in Toronto is certainly far more akin to what the Scots are used to than the stifling heat and humidity they were battling against in Texas last weekend. As a consequence, Laidlaw reckons that the errors that cost them points against the US Eagles should not be such an issue.

Laidlaw said: "I don't want to keep going on about the heat, but it was incredible and the ball was very slippy. If the chances come up again tomorrow the boys will be very keen to take them.

"There have definitely been fewer errors in training. Vern was working the forwards pretty hard the other day. He is keen to bring the workrate up a level and just play a bit more expansively, and that needs us to be pretty fit."

Given that Kelly Brown is back in the side, Laidlaw's selection as captain is a strong vote in confidence in the player, who will join up with his new team-mates at Gloucester after the tour.

"I'm delighted to be doing it again," he said. "I have always said it's a huge honour for me, and I'm very grateful to Vern to be giving it to me for another game.

"Consistency is good, but I'm delighted to have Kelly back in the team as well because he is a leader. Along with guys like Sean Lamont, he makes my job a lot easier."

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