FOUR NEW FACES IN SCOTLAND SQUAD FOR CRUCIAL SPANISH PLAY-OFF CLASH

LOUISE MCMILLAN, the Hillhead Jordanhill flanker, will earn her first Scotland Women cap in Friday night’s World Cup qualification play-off match against Spain at Scotstoun, while Murrayfield Wanderers prop Lucy Park and Lichfield team mates Sarah Bonar and Rachel Malcolm could also make their debuts off the bench.

The match will be shown live on BBC Alba. The return leg will take place in Madrid the following Saturday.

McMillan fills the gap created by the absence of Jade Konkel, Scotland’s only fully professional women’s rugby player, who has a dislocated shoulder.

All four uncapped players gained international experience in last month’s non-capped match against Wales in Cardiff. McMillan and Park are also among eleven BT Sport Scottish Rugby Academy Stage Two players selected to play Spain.

Lisa Martin will start at inside centre and captain the side. Adding their experience to the group are props Heather Lockhart, on 82 caps, and Tracey Balmer, who has started 32 of her 36 caps to date. They are joined by Hillhead Jordanhill hooker Lana Skeldon.

“We are well aware of the challenge that Spain presents and how important these Women’s Rugby World Cup Qualifiers are. We know Spain will be a much better side than they were a year ago when we played them and won but then again so are we,” said head coach Shade Munro.

“Our preparation has been going well as we look to build on progress made during this year’s Six Nations and our competitive warm-up games.”

“We’ve been looking at different combinations this season to add depth to our experienced pool of players. Competition for a place in the squad keeps pushing them all on and the chance to play in next year’s Women’s Rugby World Cup is another carrot.

“I’m excited to see what this group can achieve in front of a vocal home support at Scotstoun on Friday.”

Scotland Women team to play Spain Women at Scotstoun Stadium in Glasgow on Friday 18 November (kick-off 7.35pm) –

15. Chloe Rollie* (Murrayfield Wanderers) – 10 caps

14. Megan Gaffney (Edinburgh University) – 18 caps
13. Lisa Thomson* (Edinburgh University) – 5 caps
12. Lisa Martin* CAPTAIN (Murrayfield Wanderers) – 30 caps
11. Rhona Lloyd* (Edinburgh University) -5 caps
10. Helen Nelson* (Murrayfield Wanderers) – 2 caps
9. Sarah Law* (Murrayfield Wanderers/Edinburgh University) – 22 caps
1. Heather Lockhart (Hillhead Jordanhill) – 82 caps
2. Lana Skeldon (HillHead Jordanhill) – 15 caps
3. Tracey Balmer (Worcester) – 36 caps
4. Emma Wassell* (Murrayfield Wanderers) – 16 caps
5. Deborah McCormack (Aylesford Bulls) – 16 caps
6. Jemma Forsyth (Hillhead Jordanhill) – 15 caps
7. Louise McMillan* (Hillhead Jordanhill) – uncapped
8. Karen Dunbar* (RHC Cougars) – 14 caps
Replacements
16. Lucy Park* (Murrayfield Wanderers) – uncapped
17. Lindsey Smith (Hillhead Jordanhill) – 30 caps
18. Katie Dougan (Edinburgh University) – 2 caps
19. Sarah Bonar (Lichfield) – uncapped
20. Rachel Malcolm (Lichfield) – uncapped
21. Lyndsay O’Donnell (Worcester) – 10 caps
22. Jenny Maxwell (Lichfield) – 8 caps
23. Eilidh Sinclair* (Murrayfield Wanderers) – 11 caps
* BT Sport Scottish Rugby Academy Stage 2 players 2016-17
Not available due to injury: Jade Konkel, Mhairi Grieve, Siobhan McMillan
Image courtesy: Scottish Rugby/SNS Group
About David Barnes 2973 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.