ROB CHRYSTIE and his coaching team have announced a 34-man training squad ahead of the Scotland Club XV’s two fixtures against Ireland in 2019, at Myreside on 1st February and then at the Energia Park (aka Donnybrook) in Dublin on 8th February (the eve of Scotland’s Six Nations clash in the same city).
Eight of the ten Premiership clubs are represented, with Edinburgh Accies and Glasgow Hawks – the bottom two sides in the league – missing out. Ayr and Melrose have seven players each featured, while play-off contenders Currie Chieftains and Heriot’s have five each. Boroughmuir contribute four players, and there are two each from Hawick, Stirling County and Watsonians.
“It’s an exciting stepping stone for those selected, and we’ve got a good blend and balance of youth and experience with those who have been selected to receive the highest representative honour available in the club game,” said Chrystie, who led the side to success in the Dalriada Cup last season by securing a better points aggregate over two legs against Ireland.
“Selection has been all about those playing well in the Premiership and it’s great that these guys will get the opportunity to show what they are all about.”
There are 15 players – Fraser Thomson, Jordan Edmunds, Craig Gossman, Craig Jackson, Shawn Muir, Russell Anderson, Steven Longwell, Iain Moody, Blair Macpherson, Thomas Gordon, Struan Cessford, Ruaridh LeishmAn, Murdo McAndrew, Jamie Forbes and Robbie Nelson – in this squad, who featured in the two games played last year.
Scotland Club XV Squad 2018-19 –
Loose-head props: Ross Dunbar (Boroughmuir) and Shawn Muir (Hawick)
Tight-head props: Steven Longwell (Ayr) and Struan Cessford (Heriot’s)
Hooker: Ross Graham (Watsonians) and Russell Anderson (Melrose)
Second-row: Callum Aitkinson (Boroughmuir) and Jamie Hodgson (Watsonians)
Second/back-row: Blair Macpherson (Ayr), Iain Moody (Melrose), Ruaridh Leishman (Heriot’s) and Hamilton Burr (Stirling)
Back-row: Tommy Spinks (Ayr), Thomas Gordon (Currie Chieftains), Iain Wilson and Jack McLean (both Heriot’s) and Neil Irvine-Hess and Grant Runciman (both Melrose)
Scrum-half: Andrew Simmers (Heriot’s), David Armstrong (Ayr) and Murdo McAndrew (Melrose)
Stand-off: Gregor Hunter (Currie Chieftains), Frazier Climo (Ayr) and Lee Armstrong (Hawick),
Centre: Craig Jackson (Melrose), Robbie Nelson (Currie Chieftains), Ewan Macgarvie (Stirling County) and Danny McCluskey (Ayr)
Wing: Kyle Rowe (Ayr), Craig Gossman and Jordan Edmunds (both Boroughmuir), Ben Robbins (Currie Chieftains)
Full-back: Fraser Thomson (Melrose) and Jamie Forbes (Currie Chieftains).
Coaching Staff: Head Coach Rob Chrystie (Melrose); Assistant Coaches: Fin Gillies(Glasgow Hawks), Phil Smith (Heriot’s).