Scott Cummings joins Scotland training squad, while Andy Christie drops out

Glasgow Warriors second-row is in the final stages of a foot injury which has kept him out of action since October

Scott Cummings has joined the Scotland training squad. Image: © Craig Watson -
Scott Cummings has joined the Scotland training squad. Image: © Craig Watson -

SARACENS back-row Andy Christie has dropped out of the Scotland training squad ahead of Saturday’s clash against Wales at Murrayfield and has returned to his club due to a dead-leg.

Meanwhile, Glasgow Warriors second Scott Cummings will train with the squad this week during the final stages of his return to action from a foot injury which has kept him out of action since October.

Given how long he has been out of action, Cummings is not in contention to play this weekend. “We haven’t taken him into consideration for team selection,” confirmed scrum coach Pieter De Villiers. “But Scott being part of our wider group and an important figure going forward, it was important to get him back into the mix as soon as possible so he can start connecting with the players again.”

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Everybody else in the squad is fit and expected to be available for Saturday, including Zander Fagerson and Hamish Watson, who didn’t quite make the cut for last weekend’s Six Nations opener.

“Apart from the usual bumps and bruises, and some soft tissue here or there, we’ve got the group ready to go,” added De Villiers. “Zander is available for selection, so is Hamish, and we’ve also got a lot of players in form in those two positions of loose-forward and front-row, so the competition will be stiff in those two departments.”

De Villiers paid tribute to  WP Nel, who stepped into the breach at tight-head prop last weekend after it was decided that the England  game had come a week to soon after his hamstring injury at the start of December, but also hinted that the 36-year-old might be rotated out to the bench this week.

“WP was once again brilliant when the squad needed him,” he said. “He’s up there with the best. We sometimes need to manage him because he’s been around, but he’s definitely up there with best when it comes to set-piece experience and power.”

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About David Barnes 4026 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.


  1. Matt, there were one or two scrums that could have gone either way, it’s almost impossible for the referee to get it right every time as there are so many factors going on. The over head shots are great but the ref doesn’t get that view.
    You’re correct about the English front row, not great scrummagers.
    Several combinations for the coaches to consider. Who do you start with, George Turner was immense on Saturday but the game is becoming more squad orientated, could they put Fraser Brown and Zander on first as they will be fresh?

  2. With Zander just coming back it might be better to start Nel and give him the first 40 and then allow Zander the 2nd where his greater dynamism c@n be better used. Nel is not really a finisher.

  3. Sensible to rotate WP out this week, that must have been some shift last week.

    Hope Zander is fit for the test and keeps up his new-found ability to NOT give away daft penalties !

    Fantastic to see the whole squad still fit, and interesting to see Ireland are not matching that.

    Will Hoggsy play? Bench maybe ……

    • Totally agree. I shook his hand at the end of the match and thanked him for a hell of a shift. He looked spent. He was a worry for.many pre match and he held genge at bay.

      • WP Nel was always going to get the better of Genge in the scrums. Genge is a very-dynamic, metres-making ball carrier in the loose; however, as a loose-head prop he cannot do the basics of his job and scrummage properly.

        Nel may not make the impact of Genge, ball in hand, but, he remains a markedly better scrummager than the hugely over-rated Englishman.

        The match officials guessed wrongly once or twice and penalised the Scottish srum, when it was the English prop who was illegal.

    • Hogg on the bench for possibly the biggest match of Townsend’s era!?
      A player who has delivered so many times for Scotland and is our all time top try scorer. Madness! He was solid and dependable the whole game last week in defence, looked a little rusty in attack a couple of times ill give you that. Surely after a game under his belt Hogg will take it up a level for this game against Wales. Kinghorn number 23 and to come off the bench 2nd half.

      • We don’t know how his fitness is. It’s one thing playing a one off game after injury but that doesn’t mean you’re fit to back it up the next week. If he’s 100% fit and fully recovered from Saturday he should play, if not don’t take the risk and play Blair Kinghorn.

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