Scotland v Ireland: Gregor Townsend adds three new names to squad

Rufus McLean, Nick Haining and Sam Skinner are called up, while Richie Gray and Josh Bayliss drop out

Rufus McLean in action for Glasgow Warriors against Ulster last month. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Rufus McLean in action for Glasgow against Ulster. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

SCOTLAND head coach Gregor Townsend has added uncapped 21-year-old Glasgow Warriors winger Rufus McLean, Edinburgh back-row Nick Haining and Exeter Chiefs back-five forward Sam Skinner to his 34 man training squad ahead of Sunday’s Six Nations round four clash against Ireland at Murrayfield.

Bath back-row Josh Bayliss, who was a surprise call-up ahead of the postponed round three match against France has dropped out of the squad, as has Glasgow trio Richie Gray, who missed last weekend’s match with a concussion, Darcy Rae and Grant Stewart.

FORWARDS (19)

  • Ewan Ashman (Sale Sharks) – Uncapped
  • Simon Berghan (Edinburgh) – 28 caps
  • Jamie Bhatti (Bath) – 16 caps
  • David Cherry (Edinburgh) – 2 caps
  • Alex Craig (Gloucester) – Uncapped
  • Scott Cummings (Glasgow Warriors) – 19 caps
  • Matt Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors) – 11 caps
  • Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh) – 42 caps
  • Jonny Gray (Exeter Chiefs) – 63 caps
  • Nick Haining (Edinburgh) – 5 caps
  • Rob Harley (Glasgow Warriors) – 22 caps
  • Oli Kebble (Glasgow Warriors) – 7 caps
  • Willem Nel (Edinburgh) – 42 caps
  • Cornell du Preez (Worcester Warriors) – 9 caps
  • Jamie Ritchie (Edinburgh) – 24 caps
  • Sam Skinner (Exeter Chiefs) – 10 caps
  • Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh) – 13 caps
  • George Turner (Glasgow Warriors) – 14 caps
  • Hamish Watson (Edinburgh) – 38 caps

BACKS (15)

  • Jamie Dobie (Glasgow Warriors) – uncapped
  • Darcy Graham (Edinburgh) – 16 caps
  • Chris Harris (Gloucester) – 25 caps
  • Stuart Hogg (Exeter Chiefs) CAPTAIN – 82 caps
  • Sam Johnson (Glasgow Warriors) – 15 caps
  • Huw Jones (Glasgow Warriors) – 28 caps
  • James Lang (Harlequins) – 6 caps
  • Sean Maitland (Saracens) – 51 caps
  • Rufus McLean (Glasgow Warriors) – uncapped
  • Duhan van der Merwe (Edinburgh) – 7 caps
  • Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors) – 39 caps
  • Finn Russell (Racing 92) – 53 caps
  • Scott Steele (Harlequins) – 2 cap
  • Duncan Taylor (Saracens) – 28 caps
  • Jaco van der Walt (Edinburgh) – 1 cap

Edinburgh academy member Matt Currie (outside centre) has been invited back to train with the squad, alongside Glasgow Warriors bound Rory Darge (back-row) and Glasgow Warriors academy player Max Williamson (second-row).


Nick Grigg proves a point with impressive late showing

About David Barnes 4028 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The 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.

14 Comments

  1. Great to see Sam Johnson back in the squad. Hope he can hit form in training and get in the team for Sunday. Liked his interview today and what has given him inspiration recently…..

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  2. Mclean is being rewarded for nearly costing Glasgow the game against Zebre- twice he had players inside all he had to do was pass -certain tries if he had given them. But no glory seeking took over. Poor decision making. Hope his team mates made him buy the beers afterwards.

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    • Very harsh…. McClean has shown great pace and an ability to spot space, but like many of his contemporaries has played hardly any rugby over last two years due to covid and nonsensical way we develop young players by parking them in the stands. We have enough turgid one dimensional players in the squad already let’s break the habit of thirty years and try players with pace and ambition.

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  3. Mclean is being rewarded for nearly costing Glasgow the game against Zebre- twice he had players inside all he had to do was pass -certain tries if he had given them. But no glory seeking took over. Poor decision making. Hope his team mates made him buy the beers afterwards.

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  4. When you’re speaking to Toony – would you like to ask him what Rory Hutchinson’s crime was?

    His absence has got a lot of people wondering what he has done, given how well he is playing.

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    • I’m guessing you haven’t been watching him play recently in the Prem?

      His form has been reasonable, but despite Toonie giving him the focus of improving his defence. He’s still vulnerable there. And that’s in the Prem, which is nowhere near 6N level.

      He’s a great attacking player. But his defence just isn’t good enough. Hopefully he’ll improve. Certainly Jones went away and worked hard on his defence and it shows. But Hutchinson right now is a weakness Scotland just don’t need.

      Especially against the likes of Ireland (Ringrose/Henshaw), or France (Fickou/Vakatawa).

  5. Hi David- it’ll all gone very quiet re. Cam Redpath’s neck injury- can’t find any updates on him at all. Are you guys any the wiser?

    • Will certainly ask when we get access to a coach later this week. He did a live Instagram post soon after he left the squad when he said it was a nerve issue and that there is no set recovery time.

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    • From Townsend on Redpath today: “He is making progress but it’s not enough to be available this week. We’ll see how it goes next week, but we don’t expect him back in full training for a week or two at the very earliest. With these [nerve] injuries there is not a set timeline, it is just about seeing how your body recovers fully.”

      • Townsend on whether Rory Hutchinson’s ship had sailed – “Definitely not. It is partly about the players in the squad who are available, training well and playing well, and we have not had any injuries there. I thought last week was the best defensive performance we’ve seen from Rory this season and we are in regular communication with him. We have been bringing in players who are based outside Scotland who we think are going to make the 15 or the 23. In different circumstances I’m sure Rory would be training with us. He has been in the squad before and he knows there are areas to work on and we are seeing progress there. We do expect changes in the squad when we play three test matches back-to-back.”

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