Scotland rugby great Gavin Hastings praises Stuart Hogg – and mentions former Man Utd and Liverpool striker Michael Owen and cricketer Freddie Flintoff

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Scotland legend Gavin Hastings insists Stuart Hogg is the rugby equivalent of former England cricket icon Freddie Flintoff after watching the full-back terrorise Ireland in last weekend’s opening RBS 6 Nations victory.

The Glasgow Warriors player boosted his hopes of being included in the British Lions’ tour of New Zealand this summer after notching a brace of tries in the stunning 27-22 success at Murrayfield as Scotland won their opening group match for the first time in 11 years.

As well as comparing Hogg’s second try to when footballer Michael Owen scored a stunning solo effort for England in the 1998 World Cup against Argentina, former British Lions full back Hastings insists the 24-year-old can mesmerise a crowd just like Flintoff.

(Pic: Grant Ritchie)

Hastings said: “When Stuart Hogg is on fire as he is, there is probably no finer sight in British and Irish rugby at this moment in time in seeing the guy just burst through a gap with his exhilarating pace.

“It’s probably a bit like when Michael Owen scored that goal in the World Cup all those years ago against Argentina – it just lights up the crowd.

“I think Stuart Hogg is one of these players, (like) Freddie Flintoff, that brings the crowd to the edge of their seats whenever he gets the ball, because you’re expecting something that’s going to be a bit different and he performed extremely well at the weekend.

“Another four games like this and his name will definitely will be in contention for the Test.”

However, Hastings, who won 61 caps for Scotland and scored 667 points, insists Scotland should not get carried away despite their victory against the Irish.

And the 55 year-old reckons Sunday’s clash in France will be a severe test of their Championship credentials.

He added: “Isn’t it great for once that the Scottish faces are smiling and theres an extra spring in the step following last weekend’s great game?

“Not only the victory, but it was the manner of victory that was just wonderful to watch.”

Speaking to Talksport, he added: “Lets not get ahead of ourselves, we’ve won twice in France in about 30-odd years.

“We’ve got to go there and France were pretty unlucky to lose at Twickenham (to England) at the weekend and they’ll certainly go into Sunday’s match with a lot of motivation.

“It’s going to be extremely tough but we’re up and running and no matter the result of the weekend, we’ll still have a chance of the Triple Crown and we’ll still be very much in the running for the Championship.”

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