Scottish Rugby fans have had little to cheer about in the Six Nations so far this year. The tournament has seen the Scots post three losses from three games to date. Initial injury problems forced the hand of Coach Andy Robinson and he duly turned to youth for a solution.
Ironically, the subsequent stand out performances from the likes of PUMA stars David Denton and Stuart Hogg have provided some of the few high points in a, so far, beleaguered campaign. In particular, Stuart Hogg has grasped his opportunity with an exciting, creative vigour not seen since the early years of Chris Paterson, Gregor Townsend or Jim Renwick.
Much like these erstwhile legends of Scottish Rugby, Hogg also hails from the Scottish Borders. An infamous hotbed of passionate rugby fervour famed for frequently producing talented oval ball specialists. Whilst the region forms only one four hundredth of the population of Scotland it has, through the years, provided one sixth of its International rugby players. An extraordinary statistic that continues with today’s crop of Borders stars gracing the Murrayfield turf.
Stuart Hogg is very much a product of this famous rugby region. A proud son of Hawick, his father John Hogg played for Hawick and it was in its hilly streets of the town that young Hogg grew up endlessly playing “full contact rugby”. Making his way through the well-worn Hawick rugby youth structure he honed his inimitable running style and fearless broken field attacking play, quickly coming to prominence for the senior side as both a brilliant utility back and a devastating sevens specialist. From there he was capped at all Scotland age grade levels and signed by Glasgow Warriors as a development player in 2011.
Named in the Scotland A team at the start of 2012 and featuring in a shock victory over a much-fancied England Saxons side, Hogg scored a fabulous try. His mazy run broke through several England tackles before he touched the ball down and became an overnight sensation. This performance saw him make the bench for the Scotland v Wales match, coming on the pitch to make one of his blistering trademark breaks and nearly scoring a try. A star was born and at Murrayfield the following week against France he delivered substance to the hype with a brilliant try in the opening exchanges and an electrifying performance throughout.
From here Stuart Hogg will surely go on to achieve greatness both for Scotland and inevitably, the British and Irish Lions. He remains another exciting prospect from the region of Scotland that always provides true rugby talent.