Guinness Six Nations Championship
Three changes as Scots aim to end with a flourish
Happy: Gregor Townsend (pic: SNS Group)
Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend has made three changes to his team for Saturday’s Guinness Six Nations finale against Wales in Cardiff.
All three adjustments are made to the forward pack, where hooker and vice-captain Stuart McInally, No. 8 Magnus Bradbury (both Edinburgh), and second-row Sam Skinner (Exeter Chiefs) come in – the latter starting for the first time this campaign.
Glasgow Warriors pair Fraser Brown (hooker) and Scott Cummings (second-row) move to the bench as a consequence, with fellow Warrior Matt Fagerson coming into the match-day squad to take the place among the replacements vacated by Bradbury and Nick Haining, who is unavailable through illness.
Saturday will also see captain Stuart Hogg move into joint seventh place on Scotland’s all-time appearance list, overtaking recently retired former skippers Greig Laidlaw and John Barclay to join Jason White and Nathan Hines on 77 caps.
Townsend is looking to extend his winning run to three matches in the competition after victories over Italy and France and said: “We set out this season to improve our consistency over a run of five tough games, something we have done well so far.
“We’ve stayed in the fight in every game, which is a credit to how hard the players have worked in training and during the Tests.
“It’s also been encouraging to see how well the players have grown together and have taken on board the input from new coaches, Steve (Tandy) and Pieter (de Villiers), who have done a great job in their first season with the team.
“We’ve still got a lot to improve on and we’ll have to fight even harder on Saturday in Cardiff, which is one of the best and toughest places to play Test rugby.”
Kick-off is 2.15pm.
Scotland: Hogg (capt); Maitland, Harris, Johnson, Kinghorn; Hastings, Price; Sutherland, McInally, Fagerson, Skinner, Gilchrist, Ritchie, Watson, Bradbury. Replacements: Brown, Dell, Nel, Cummings, Fagerson, Horne, Weir, Steyn.