Scotland second-row Grant Gilchrist has vowed that the Scotland team will answer those critics who have questioned their commitment to the cause following Sunday’s World Cup horror show against Ireland.

The team has been the focus of an unprecedented level of denigration following that 27-3 loss in Yokohama, and some of it has been way out of proportion. Tensions always run high at a World Cup, and Gilchrist said he can understand why some people are so angry – and he also acknowledged that the only way for the team to answer those who are knocking them is to go out against Samoa in Kobe on Monday night and put in a performance the nation can be proud of.

“People are questioning whether we care and whether we are aggressive enough, and that’s hurtful so we need to go out and really show that [we do care and are aggressive enough],” he said.

“We all took a beating on Sunday night. We’d put a lot of work in behind the scenes for the last four or five months building towards that game and it’s no surprise that in the 48 hours afterwards you are going to be in a dark place because everybody is rightly annoyed and a bit pissed off with how we played.

“But nobody is more annoyed and pissed off than the guys who have been grafting for the last four months.

“I think we look internally first,” he added. “What we set out to achieve, we didn’t do. We made a commitment to each other to do X, Y and Z – and, to me, that’s the biggest thing... what you commit to your team-mates. External to that, we’ve got some motivating factors, but there is enough for us to be concentrating on in-house in terms what we can do better."

Gilchrist explained that the squad had taken part in a full review of the Ireland match on Tuesday night which was both ‘uncomfortable’ and cathartic.

“[We said] let’s get it all out on the table – let’s fire the bullets and take the bullets like men,” he said. “We are professional rugby players –we have the odd bad game and that’s a fact of life – it is about taking it on the chin and working out how you can be better collectively and individually.

“We take the learnings forward and we close the book on the emotion, because you have to get your head up and realise this World Cup is alive for us. There is a huge opportunity on Monday for us to right our wrongs. If we right our wrongs on Monday, then it rolls on and we can build on that towards what we have set out to achieve in this World Cup.

“We have to put in the hard yards [at training this week] and when we get out there, especially that first 10 minutes, it has to be through the roof.

While Sunday night showed that rugby remains, fundamentally, a pretty simple game in which the team which can impose itself physically on the opposition will generally come out on top –Gilchrist has warned that the hurt and raw emotion of Scotland’s current plight should not cloud their judgement. In short, there must be control.

“It is not all just aggression,” said the Edinburgh man. “There’s a lot of technical things that need to be right to become aggressive. It is not just about getting angry and going out and hitting things – we would be rubbish and people would say you’ve lost discipline. Quite often tackles are missed when guys try to be aggressive – because they are not technically good.

“We are under no illusions. We’re not going to go out there and chuck the playbook away, it’s about being really accurate in what you do and having a bit of edge to you, and that’s what we are going to try to bring on Monday.

“There will be certain ways we can get ourselves into the game pretty early,” he concluded. "Simplifying things and getting ourselves into the game is going to be a big part of it. From a front-five point of view, there is always a ruck to hit, there is always a maul to hit, there is always something you can do to get yourself physically into the game, and we need to make sure that our first actions across the 15 are more aggressive and more energetic than we have ever shown before.”