Scotland under-18 head coach Grant McKelvey highlighted the leadership qualities of captain Stuart McInally ahead of the team's opening match of the U18 Six Nations Festival against France at Cork Institute of Technology on Wednesday afternoon (26 March, kick off 5pm).Scotland under-18 head coach Grant McKelvey highlighted the leadership qualities of captain Stuart McInally ahead of the team's opening match of the U18 Six Nations Festival against France at Cork Institute of Technology on Wednesday afternoon (26 March, kick off 5pm).
Back rower McInally has been an ever present in the line-up during the team's opening three matches and has shone out during the wins over England A and Italy before the side lost in Wales last week.
As a result, McInally has been handed the captain's armband for the first game in a three-match tournament which sees Scotland take on France, Ireland (Saturday 29 March, kick off 2.30pm) and England (Tuesday 1 April 2008, kick off 2.30pm) and McKelvey praised the teenagers ability to lead the team.
McKelvey said: "Stuart is the leader of the group and he has proved himself to be a natural leader over the three years that this group have been together.
_x001C_There are now other leaders beginning to emerge within the programme in different positions.
_x001C_But Stuart acquits himself well; both on and off the field. He understands the aims and the objectives of the programme very well and he leads the team with authority."
Despite suffering a loss in Aberavon, McKelvey believes the team will be able to use the experience to their advantage in order to achieve a positive result against France.
He added: _x001C_We are expecting the lessons that we learnt last week will be acted upon and that we will see some improvements this week.
_x001C_The fact we are playing France is a big motivation for the players. We have trained well since we came over to Cork and we are expecting another physical encounter similar to the game we had in Wales._x001D_
Scotland under-18 team (sponsor Martin Currie) to play France at Cork Institute of Technology (Wednesday 26 March, kick-off 5pm)
15 Sam Hughes (Merchiston Castle School)
14 Max Learmonth (Berwick)
13 Michael Tait (Kelso Quins)*
12 Alex Dunbar (Annan)
11 Jamie Harris (Merchiston Castle School)
10 Alex Blair (Edinburgh Academy)
9 Russell Weir (Merchiston Castle School)
1 Craig Owenson (Musselburgh)*
2 Mungo Strachan (Fettes College)
3 Andrew Fraser (York)
4 Grant Gilchrist (Stirling County)
5 Robert Harley (West of Scotland)*
6 Stuart McInally (George Watson's College)* CAPTAIN
7 Ross Sutherland (Sandbach)
8 Jason Hill (Stirling County)
Substitutes: Alun Walker (Musselburgh), Luke Pettie (Gala Wanderers), Nicky Little (Hawick)*, Calum Connor (Bradford Grammar), Michael Maltman (Musselburgh), Michael Fedo (Bell Baxter/Howe of Fife), Alex Black (Prince Henry's School), Ross Aitken (Bell Baxter/Howe of Fife)*, Rory Drummond (Bell Baxter HS), Seeumas MacKenzie (Murrayfield Wanderers).
*Member of Scottish Rugby's National Junior Academy and supported by Area Institute of Sport.