Guinness Six Nations Championship
Townsend names uncapped quartet in 35-man squad
Depth: Gregor Townsend (pic: SNS Group)
Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend has named four uncapped players in his squad of 35 for the upcoming Guinness Six Nations Championship.
Edinburgh hooker David Cherry, Sale hooker Ewan Ashman, Gloucester forward Alex Craig and Bath centre Cameron Redpath have all been included.
Redpath is the son of former Scotland scrum-half Bryan and has been on the fringes of the England set-up, having represented England Under-20s and named in squads by Eddie Jones without winning a full cap.
Returning to the squad are Newcastle Falcons back rower, Gary Graham, Sale Sharks wing, Byron McGuigan, Glasgow Warriors hooker, Grant Stewart and London Irish prop Alan Dell.
Townsend has chosen just two scrum-halfs, with Glasgow Warriors’ Ali Price and Harlequins’ Scott Steele selected.
Linking up at half-back will be Racing 92’s Finn Russell, who returns following an injury sustained in the concluding match of the 2020 Six Nations campaign against Wales, and Edinburgh’s Jaco Van de Walt, who made his Scotland debut in the Autumn Nations Cup semi-final against Ireland.
Finn Russell returns (pic: SNS Group)
“As coaches we have selected a group which we believe can build on the work our players put in throughout the recent Autumn Nations Cup campaign and kick on again in terms of performance levels,” said Townsend.
“The depth we have across the squad enables us to bring in some new players who have excelled in recent weeks and others who we believe can perform at Test level.
“Our tournament gets off to a fantastic start with a fixture we look forward to every year against England and the opportunity to win back the Calcutta Cup at Twickenham.
“We are very aware how different this year’s competition will be due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but it also provides a huge amount of positivity and enjoyment for millions of supporters and we are looking forward to contesting every match and giving this championship our very best.”
The Twickenham clash on 6 February will be played behind closed doors, as will Scotland’s first home match of the tournament against Wales.
Forwards: Ewan Ashman (Sale Sharks), Simon Berghan (Edinburgh), David Cherry (Edinburgh) – Uncapped, Alex Craig (Gloucester), Scott Cummings (Glasgow Warriors), Allan Dell (London Irish), Matt Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors), Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors), Gary Graham (Newcastle Falcons), Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh), Jonny Gray (Exeter Chiefs), Richie Gray (Glasgow Warriors), Oli Kebble (Glasgow Warriors), Willem Nel (Edinburgh), Jamie Ritchie (Edinburgh), Grant Stewart (Glasgow Warriors), Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh), Blade Thomson (Scarlets), George Turner (Glasgow Warriors), Hamish Watson (Edinburgh).
Backs: Darcy Graham (Edinburgh), Chris Harris (Gloucester), Stuart Hogg (Exeter Chiefs), Huw Jones (Glasgow Warriors), Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh), James Lang (Harlequins), Sean Maitland (Saracens), Byron McGuigan (Sale Sharks), Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors), Cameron Redpath (Bath), Finn Russell (Racing 92), Scott Steele (Harlequins), Duncan Taylor (Saracens), Jaco van der Walt (Edinburgh), Duhan van der Merwe (Edinburgh).