WHENEVER I think of Six Nations matches at Murrayfield (and even Five Nations before that), I seem to be able to recall more matches against the Welsh than any other nation, even England. Maybe that’s because through time, there have been some genuine, unforgettable moments.

It wasn’t every day, when as a schoolboy, you got to be one of 104,000 to see Scotland hold out for an unexpected win in 1975, or two years later, watched Welsh mastery at work when Phil Bennett waltzed and jinked his way through the scrambling Scottish ranks to score under the posts.

And then there was 20 years ago, when, before most folk had snuggled down into their seats, Scotland scored a try through John Leslie in world-record time. Another memory from that afternoon was, as the teams traipsed off at half-time, one of the limping wounded, Doddie Weir, was being assisted from the field.

Yesterday, Doddie made it back to centre stage, resplendent in his blue-and-red tartan suit, to take the acclaim of the 67,000-strong full house, the big fella collecting a cheque for over £150,000, the proceeds from the Doddie Weir Cup meeting in Cardiff back in November.

That Doddie was here, in itself, is a minor miracle. Make that a miracle, full stop. Ravaged by MND, but fortified by no shortage of courage, determination, stubbornness and quantities of red wine and Guinness, this giant of Scottish rugby – and dare I say the world game given his profile through his quest to find a cure to this horrible and indiscriminate condition – rightly took the applause from Scots and Welsh, men and women, Saltire-painted warriors and daffodils. Touching? I couldn’t say. My glasses, at the moment, decided to steam up.

This game of course was always going to be about more than just the Doddie Weir Cup, eventually collected by Alun Wyn Jones, who if he lifts it again, could probably lay claim to ownership on a permanent basis.

The sizeable contingent who had travelled north for this one politely applauded their heroes as they performed a low-key lap of honour around Murrayfield. No wild celebrations, no demonstrative exhibitionism from the Wales players or fans. There will be plenty of time for that, perhaps, if everything goes according to plan next week.

A win for Wales in Edinburgh, making it four out of four thus far, merely kept alive their dream of a Grand Slam, a fitting farewell to the tenure of coach Warren Gatland. In seven days, back in Cardiff, Ireland will be the last obstacle, the final hurdle for the Welsh.

However, despite the win, Gatland suggested that it was a game where all their ambition could have been derailed.

“We were pretty comfortable in the first half and to be fair to Scotland, they’ve come out and put us under a lot of pressure in the second half. We lost the second half 5-3 but we showed some real character.”

Gatland explained; “I think any team that has won a Grand Slam, and even Ireland last year, with that Johnny Sexton drop goal [in Paris], you look back on games in this competition and you will know that you’ve had a little bit of luck.

“I don’t know, that from a coaching perspective, we needed to be a bit tougher at half-time, and maybe we were thinking that we were pretty comfortable and going out and delivering a second half, and as a result we were maybe thinking about next week, and the Irish game.”

Whatever happens next week, it will be Gatland’s last Six Nations game – “for Wales,” he mischievously laughed, with obvious reference to being linked with England – and therefore it goes without saying, Saturday in Cardiff will be an emotional day.

“There is no doubt about that. It’s Paddy’s Day next week so the Irish will be chomping at the bit as well. It’s going to be a great occasion, you won’t be able to get a ticket anywhere, and the competition is still open.

“England will be thinking that if we get knocked over then they can win it, Ireland will think the same. We want to win this championship and the only way to win it is by getting the Grand Slam.

“If we do that there will be some serious celebrations afterwards. But we have to regroup, get home, look at the banged-up bodies and plan, for as well as we can, for this week.

“The beauty of that is we do get another day prepping over Ireland, so that will be a challenge for them.”

While on the international front, all is well with Welsh rugby, amongst the PRO14 clubs especially, there is mayhem behind the scenes, given the financial difficulties many are under. Midway through a Six Nations campaign, the last thing Gatland wanted or needed was for the emphasis to switch on to the futures of his group of players, rather than beating Scotland.

There is no doubt that Monday and Tuesday had an impact on the players. In fairness to the players, after the second part of the week, they just tried to get on with their job.

“But winning has become a habit and these guys just tried to find a way to get the job done.”