Stoking The Fires Of Desire

He may be a novice by international back-row terms but Alasdair Strokosch spoke with such fierce pride and determination today about the challenge facing Scotland in Saturday's second Test against Argentina that woe betide anyone who questions his desire. Strokosch, a product of East Kilbride, won his fifth cap in Rosario at the weekend and expressed his disappointment to his team-mates in the changing room immediately after the 15-21 loss.

He may be a novice by international back-row terms but Alasdair Strokosch spoke with such fierce pride and determination today about the challenge facing Scotland in Saturday's second Test against Argentina that woe betide anyone who questions his desire.

Strokosch, a product of East Kilbride, won his fifth cap in Rosario at the weekend and expressed his disappointment to his team-mates in the changing room immediately after the 15-21 loss.

"There was more than me that got really angry about it," he explained. _x001C_I felt after we played and lost against Italy 'it's happened here again'. I'm getting sick of losing games we should be winning.

That's not to be disrespectful of Argentina. They don't often have a bad game. They rely so much on emotion and making the game pretty messy and they'll always try to boss the contact zone._x001D_

Strokosch only made his first start for Scotland against Ireland at Croke Park earlier this year, reward for some outstanding displays for Gloucester, and he offers a fresh perspective on the demands of international rugby.

If we can fulfil our potential then we can be a top four or top five nation. Are we going to be a team that can raise our game once or twice a year or be consistently good? We have to make that choice,_x001D_ he said.

Strokosch, 25, believes better execution at breakdown is crucial for Scotland to improve their performance this weekend and as befitting a former competitor at the karate under-21 world championship, he will bring physicality with discipline to that stage.

At breakdown you have to want to hurt someone (not in an illegal sense) but you have to want to be dominant,_x001D_ he added.

All 30 Scotland players trained today at the GEBA club in Buenos Aires and are available for selection - a tribute to the medical team of Dr James Robson and physiotherapists Stephen Mutch and Torgny Johansson.

The Scotland team will be named at 1pm UK time on Thursday and first news and reaction will be on www.scottishrugby.org