The Official Online RBS 6 Nations Store is open. The store has everything you need to get behind your team during the RBS 6 Nations, plus the store is now fully stocked with a much wider range of rugby merchandise.
The fierce defensive front they demonstrated in beating the World Cup semi-finalists will lift the side going into the autumn internationals – however for Ansbro, the tour was more about this squad pressing the reset button and moving on from a disappointing spring.
If Scotland are to make their own run into the knockout stages – and Scottish RFU chief executive Mark Dodson has outlined plans to win the Webb Ellis trophy in 2015 – the 26-year-old is under no illusions that their recent form must not simply be the high point in the kind of inconsistent season that has dogged Scottish rugby of late.
“The emphasis from the start of the tour was to make it a positive trip – we wanted to enjoy it and learn to trust each other out on the field again,” said Ansbro.
“The positive impact of those three wins was immeasurable. As a team, we’ve stuck together through thick and thin but getting three on the bounce is something a lot of us have never experienced before with Scotland.
“Anything can happen in rugby and we have four years to build, which is a fairly long time.
“Aiming just to get to the quarter-finals of a World Cup is a waste of time – it was extremely frustrating to lose out in the group stage over in New Zealand, but who wants to aspire to that level though?
“You have to be in these things to win them.”
Having been reduced to a mid-week fixture in Australia, Scotland will have the perfect opportunity to send a message to world rugby this autumn, and prove their summer success was no fluke – hosting the All Blacks and Springboks at Murrayfield.
Ansbro – who had returned to the squad after missing the 2012 RBS 6 Nations with a back injury – was surprised just how low the mood was in the squad at the start of the tour.
However like so much in sport, when the wins started coming, including victories over Samoa and Fiji, everything fell into place for the group off the field as well.
They will need more than momentum to produce another upset at Murrayfield, but Ansbro points to Harlequins’ Premiership title last year as a perfect model of how a team can upset the odds.
“I missed the Six Nations and wasn’t in the camp, so I didn’t realise how down the lads were at all,” added Ansbro.
“By the end we were all tanned up and smiling because we had won three games. It was extremely special when we headed over to the islands – in a way it felt like an extended summer holiday.
“We were ecstatic because it was an amazing win in Australia but we have the autumn Tests coming up and we have to demand more of ourselves.
“We are professionals, we all are. A lot of people wouldn’t have had Harlequins down as Premiership winners last year but they have built a great squad and all bought into a particular style of play that works.”