SCOTLAND forwards coach Danny Wilson has known Russian head coach Lyn Jones for a long time, so he is not surprised the team which only made it into the World Cup after Portugal, Belgium and Spain were thrown out for fielding ineligible players during the qualifying process, have been a real handful in their three games.

Japan, Samoa and Ireland have all struggled to break the Russians down, and it wasn’t until the final quarter that the bonus-point for the victorious team was secured.

“With Shaun Connor [the Russian assistant coach] there as well, their identity is probably what you expect from a team coached by Lyn,” Wilson said. “They are a very good defensive team and their contact area defence is a real handful. Their kicking game is pretty astute as well, so they are probably the areas we need to be fully aware of when we play them next Wednesday. They have grown throughout the tournament and done well. They are a threat and we have got to be right on top of our game to deal with that.

“Lyn is a very clever coach in how he goes about his game plan, so there is lots for us to be aware of. At times they frustrated Ireland [on Thursday] and I think they turned them over eight times – so we know what is coming. We have to get the imprint on the game we want.

Wilson got to know Jones during their days coaching in Wales, and it is clear there is respect there.

“We did a lot of our coach education at the same time in terms of badges, so I spent a fair bit of time with him through that and at conferences,” recalled Wilson. “Obviously our teams have played against each other over the years, when Lyn was at the Ospreys and the Dragons [and when Wilson was head coach at Cardiff Blues].

“He’s great fun, he’s got a lot of good stories. He is one of the brains of the game. From the early days of my coaching career in Wales, he was extremely well respected in terms of his rugby brain, and still is. He has got a lot to offer. I am sure he will have something up his sleeve that we will have to deal with.”

Wilson was impressed by Russia’s gutsy performance against Ireland, but added that it has not caused a rethink of approach to the game amongst the Scotland coaching team.

“We have got a good squad with some real quality in it and it is important we manage that well over that short period between games,” said Wilson. “Obviously in the back of your mind you do need to prepare for a short turnaround to play Japan, but we won’t be taking this first challenge lightly. We know we need to get maximum points out of this game, which will be a challenge in itself, and one we relish.

“They will obviously want to get a victory in their last game, and I know they will be very well prepared for that.”