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RUGBY UNION: BEYOND OUR KENNY; SCOTLAND 60 ROMANIA 19 : Lethal Logan has Romania on the run with 26 points in pre-World Cup romp.

KENNY Logan claimed 26 points as Scotland restored some pride and credibility at Hampden with a morale-boosting victory over the gritty Romanians.

It was a vastly improved display by the Five Nations champions in the wake of their humbling by Argentina - but on this evidence they still have a heap of work to do before they can go into the World Cup with any realistic aspirations.

Scotland made a mixed start in their first international at the old stadium since 1906.

Alan Tait created a promising opening with a beautifully weighted chip, but Kenny Logan was beaten to the vital touch.

Then Tait latched left his markers for dead with a mazy surge from 15 metres out for Logan to convert.

Scrum-half Petre Mitu slotted over a penalty before Logan replied with a double.

The penalty ping-pong continued as both sides made more errors and Mitu was on target again after a high challenge by Tom Smith on his own 22- line.

That was the cue for Scotland to up the ante and they claimed their second touchdown six minutes before the break.

Lock Stuart Grimes burrowed through after the Romanians failed to stave off the pack-charge in the wake of a tapped penalty five metres out. Logan converted.

Two minutes later, the Scots effectively clinched the victory when Logan crashed through the middle to give himself the easiest kick of the day so far.

Scotland kept up the momentum after the restart with strong runs from Metcalfe and Gordon Simpson, but there were still moments of carelessness which let them down badly with the try-line at their mercy.

It was the plucky visitors who earned the first clear-cut scoring chance of the half, however, and Mitu calmly completed his penalty hat-trick after George Graham went offside at a ruck.

Again the setback sparked the Scots into potent action and James McLaren ploughed over for his first Test touchdown at the end of a series of short- penalty moves deep inside the danger zone. Logan, looking much more assured, landed the conversion to create a gap of 25 points after 53 minutes.

Mitu pulled back three points with yet another accurate penalty strike, but any hopes of a shock comeback were quickly snuffed out.

Martin Leslie spiralled over at the tail of a rolling maul as the Romanians struggled to stem wave after wave of forward surges. Logan's run continued as he chipped the kick.

And he followed up to grab his second try before handing the boot duties to Duncan Hodge, who obliged from under the bar.

The persistent Mitu took advantage of defensive indecision to steal a consolation score for Romania, which he converted himself.

But substitute flanker Cammy Mather celebrated his first cap with another pack-orientated try as Scotland reached the half-century.

Ref Chris White then handed the Scots a penalty try goaled by Hodge to complete the romp.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:Kelso, David
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Aug 29, 1999
Next Article:RUGBY UNION: BRAWLER JOHNSON; ENGLAND 36 CANADA 11: I couldn't stand by and let them hit my players.

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