Even those of us who advocate the importance of looking to take chances tend, by instinct, to be risk adverse, while the most enthusiastic of gamblers will spend a long time weighing up odds and there is a reason that favourites are favourites.

Sometimes, then, the best outcomes are a consequence of being forced into an option we might not otherwise have chosen to go for, which is something I have been thinking about a lot recently and was crystallised in watching Edinburgh’s latest European Challenge Cup performance last weekend.

Blair Kinghorn may not yet be the finished article as a full-back, but throughout this season the way the 20-year-old has increasingly looked like becoming one of those players who generates a buzz when in possession with Edinburgh’s entertainment value benefitting enormously from his contributions.

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Admittedly his coaches have seemed keen to remind him that he has plenty to work on, while he managed, rather amusingly, to irritate one of my media colleagues in an early interview that had a touch of Jeremy Paxman – Michael Howard about it, as several attempts to get him to express international aspirations for the coming autumn Test series were wisely rebutted. However, the promise has been obvious and all the more so when Edinburgh were forced into a late change last Friday when Jaco Van Der Walt withdrew because of illness. With Dunc Weir and Jason Tovey both out longer term it was time for the management to get a bit creative and Kinghorn’s inclusion in the play-making role proved inspired.

There is a considerable caveat in the nature of the opposition which meant that the match was little more than a semi-opposed training session, to the extent that no matter how difficult their trip to Siberia may have been and how lightly Stade Francais took it, Krasny Yar’s defeat of the Challenge Cup holders in their opening pool match looks all the more bizarre. Even so the encounter let Kinghorn demonstrate qualities that could, perhaps, give his teams a different dimension from the play-making role.

Close to 6’5” and nudging 15 stones in weight the youngster carries an imposing presence and the inevitable doubts about the ability of big men to get quickly into their running seemed at least partly answered by the burst of acceleration that brought about his solo try from close to halfway, the pace he sustained to take him the distance providing less of a surprise given what we had already seen from full-back. The moment I enjoyed most, though, was when he made something of an error in moving laterally, inviting defenders onto him behind his support. Rather than panic he kept his composure and showed awareness once he had spun away from the initial contact in realising he had created some running room which he took advantage of before sending half-back partner Sean Kennedy clear to the line.

Much tougher challenges await if this is to have been anything other than a memorable cameo, but it was an appropriate weekend to be reminded of a similar situation closer to five years ago when, during the Six Nations Championship window Glasgow Warriors found their resources stretched and opted to play Peter Horne, who had initially made his name as a schoolboy full-back before being converted to centre, at stand off.

This was not against a Krasny Yar but an Ulster side led by their influential Springbok half-back Ruan Pienaar and my clear memory is of an outstanding all round performance, one of the best I have seen by a Scottish play-maker, with the exception of his goal-kicking.

Glasgow were to win the match with a bonus point, but Horne’s four missed kicks at goal seemed to influence the analysis of many of those watching.

It was highly encouraging, then, to discover that Dave Rennie, Glasgow’s new coach, has looked at Horne with fresh eyes, liked what he has seen and, hand forced by Finn Russell’s imminent departure, decided he may not have to recruit a replacement for the Scotland stand off.

Reports of Horne’s performance in Montpellier were highly encouraging on a weekend that reminded us that of the benefits that can sometimes be had from being forced to get inventive.