scotland rugby

Scotland coach Vern Cotter has named a 34-man squad for the 2015 Six Nations which includes four new caps and retains Greig Laidlaw as captain.

The uncapped quartet of  scrum half Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, lock Ben Toolis  and back rowers Huge Blake and Hamish Watson are all included in the squad.

There is no place in the squad for experienced quintet Johnnie Beattie, John Barclay, Kelly Brown, Ryan Grant or Chris Cusiter as Cotter focuses in on developing his young squad.

15 of the players named come from Glasgow, whilst Edinburgh contribute 11 players, including the aforementioned uncapped quartet.

Grant Gilchrist, Adam Ashe and Duncan Weir have also been ruled out of the Six Nations as a result of longer-term injuries

Of the new caps, Cotter said: “They have impressed me with their desire to go forward, and reflect the Scottish spirit of attacking and leading, to develop into impressive performers.”

“We are approaching this 6 Nations looking to perform and develop,” he continued. “It will be a great process for us and I know the players are looking forward to it. Obviously we’ll be facing some very good sides, four of which are above us in the world rankings, however we have nothing to hide going into this year.

“We start with a very difficult game against France in Paris and we will prepare as best as possible for that game and adapt as the competition evolves.


“Every time they pull on the jersey they will want to express themselves fully, so it’s with excitement that we look to the Six Nations, because we want to see how far we can compete, how well we can adapt, and how well we can equip ourselves in this very tough competition.

“I’m very confident that the players selected will underline the improvements we showed in the autumn as well as some others as the group continues to come together. We were all affected so positively by the support during the Autumn Tests, which really lifted the players and made them so proud to pull on the shirt and play here at Murrayfield. It’s a great challenge.”

Scotland squad:

Forwards: Hugh Blake (Edinburgh Rugby), Fraser Brown (Glasgow Warriors), Blair Cowan, Geoff Cross (both London Irish), David Denton, Alasdair Dickinson (Edinburgh Rugby), Jonny Gray (Glasgow Warriors), Richie Gray (Castres), Ross Ford (Edinburgh Rugby), Jim Hamilton (Saracens), Rob Harley, Euan Murray, Gordon Reid (all Glasgow Warriors), Alasdair Strokosch (Perpignan), Ben Toolis, Hamish Watson (both Edinburgh Rugby), Jon Welsh (Glasgow Warriors).

Backs: Mark Bennett (Glasgow Warriors), Sam Hidalgo-Clyne (Edinburgh Rugby), Alex Dunbar, (Glasgow Warriors) Dougie Fife (Edinburgh Rugby), Stuart Hogg, Peter Horne (both Glasgow Warriors) Greig Laidlaw CAPTAIN (Gloucester), Sean Lamont, Sean Maitland, Henry Pyrgos, Finn Russell (all Glasgow Warriors), Matt Scott (Edinburgh Rugby), Tommy Seymour (Glasgow Warriors), Greig Tonks, Tim Visser (both Edinburgh Rugby).