WATCH: Joe Schmidt: Defeat despite second-half fightback ‘particularly tough to take’

Ireland boss Joe Schmidt was hugely disappointed to see his side slip to defeat in their opening match of this year’s Six Nations, particularly given “gilt-edged chances” to close out a win in the second half.

Scotland led 21-8 at the break, a scoreline that Schmidt admitted was deserved after a disappointing first half.

“We arrived at the stadium ten or fifteen minutes late and we were late for most things in the first half, just really off our game,” he said afterwards.

“I think the Scottish attack really took advantage of that. They've got some really sharp players, especially when they gave it some width.”

Schmidt felt his side worked hard to get back into the game: “I thought we clawed our way back in the second half.”

But despite taking a one-point lead at one stage, Ireland couldn’t close out the game.

"It was incredibly disappointing to let it slip at the end.”

But Schmidt was determined to also acknowledge the positives.

“We’re not out of the competition, we did get a point out of the game - with the bonus point system, at least we've got that.

“Probably disappointing to get three tries as well, because we're only one away from getting one more.

“We haven't played for a long time, and there's a few changes in there as well since last time we played. You're always trying to bed things in as best you can in training, but until you actually get into the match arena with that pressure that comes with it, it does make it very difficult.”

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