'Local' Lads Go Head To Head For International Honours

Two local scrum-halves are competing for a place in the starting line up for Scotland under-20’s opening 6 Nations encounter against France at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium, Inverness on Friday (5 February, kick-off 7.30pm).

Like ALL Scottish Rugby youth, age-grade and Scotland Women matches, admission to Scotland under-20 v France under-20 in Inverness on Friday 5 February (kick-off 7.30pm) is FREE – no need for a ticket, just turn up and take your seat!

In line for the number nine jersey are Wick-born Kris Hamilton who plies his trade in Scottish Hydro National 2 for Caithness and Inverness-born Alex Black of Leeds Carnegie.

Born in Inverness, Alex Black moved to Nottingham aged four

Two local scrum-halves are competing for a place in the starting line up for Scotland under-20’s opening 6 Nations encounter against France at the Tulloch Caledonian Stadium, Inverness on Friday (5 February, kick-off 7.30pm).

Like ALL Scottish Rugby youth, age-grade and Scotland Women matches, admission to Scotland under-20 v France under-20 in Inverness on Friday 5 February (kick-off 7.30pm) is FREE – no need for a ticket, just turn up and take your seat!

In line for the number nine jersey are Wick-born Kris Hamilton who plies his trade in Scottish Hydro National 2 for Caithness and Inverness-born Alex Black of Leeds Carnegie.

Despite moving to Nottingham aged four, Black maintained his contact with the country of his birth and, as a result, has been selected for Scotland’s under-17, under-18 and under-19 age-grades, edging out Hamilton as the starting scrum-half when they were selected at under-19.

Black explained: “I always wanted to play for Scotland and thankfully, through Scottish Rugby’s exile programme, I was given that opportunity at under-17s and have managed to stay in the system since.

“We’ve a very strong back line with some very skilful players like Alex Blair and have some great options in the centre and second-row pairings which should serve us well.

“I’ve not been back to Inverness for a while but it’ll be nice to go back and play international rugby there – getting the nod to start would certainly not be a bad way to return.

“From what Kris [Hamilton] has said, bus loads of people are planning to come to the game so hopefully it’ll make it quite intimidating for our opposition. It’s nice to know people are behind you, it’s definitely like a 16th man on the pitch.”

The Scotland under-20 team to play France at Tulloch Caledonian Stadium will be announced tomorrow by media release.

Like ALL Scottish Rugby youth, age-grade and Scotland Women matches, admission to Scotland under-20 v France under-20 at Inverness on Friday 5 February (kick-off 7.30pm) is FREE – no need for a ticket, just turn up and take your seat!

SCOTLAND UNDER-20 SQUAD FOR THE 2010 6 NATIONS

Forwards
Craig Owenson (Heriot’s)**, Nicky Little (Hawick)*, Nick Fraser (Boroughmuir), George Hunter (Glasgow Hawks), Colin Philips (Stewart’s Melville)**, Alun Walker (Currie), Lindsey Gibson (Melrose), Calum Taylor (Glasgow Hawks), Robert Harley (West of Scotland)*, Grant Gilchrist (Stirling County)*, Aaron Hall (Newcastle Falcons), Matthew Reid (Heriot’s), David Denton (Edinburgh Accies)*, Michael Maltman (Heriot’s)**, Stuart McInally (Watsonians)*, Calum Stidston-Nott (London Scottish), Michael Fedo (Watsonians), Chris Thomson (Loughborough University)

Backs
Kris Hamilton (Caithness)**, Alex Black (Leeds Carnegie), Alex Blair (Edinburgh Accies)*, Matthew Scott (Currie)**, Ross Aitken (Howe of Fife)**, Alex Dunbar (Selkirk)*, Jonny Kennedy (Sale Sharks), Michael Tait (Newcastle Falcons), George Watkins (Bristol Rugby), Tom Brown (Edinburgh Accies)*, Oliver Grove (Worcester Warriors), Callum McBurnie (Moseley), Dougie Fife (Currie)**, James Johnstone (Currie)*

* Denotes a member of the Scottish National Contracted Academy
** Denotes a member of the Scottish Rugby National Academy supported by the Scottish Institute of Sport

SCOTLAND UNDER-20 6 NATIONS SCHEDULE
Friday 5 February – Scotland under-20 v France under-20 (Tulloch Caledonian Stadium (kick-off 7.30pm)
Friday 12 February – Wales under-20 v Scotland under-20 (Cardiff Arms Park, kick-off 7.05pm)
Friday 26 February – Italy under-20 v Scotland under-20 (Capoterra, Sardinia, kick-off 5pm tbc local)
Friday 12 March – Scotland under-20 v England (Firhill, kick-off 7pm)
Friday 19 March – Ireland under-20 v Scotland under-20 (Dubarry Park, Athlone, Ireland, kick-off 7.35pm)

RBS 6 NATIONS - SCOTLAND V FRANCE
About 6,000 tickets remain to see Scotland take on France in the RBS 6 Nations Championship on Sunday 7 February at Murrayfield, kick-off 3pm.  However, tickets are selling fast.
Tickets can be purchased in person from the Scottish Rugby Ticket Centre, Roseburn Street, Edinburgh, Monday to Friday from 9am to 8pm and on Saturday from 10am to 5pm. Tickets may also be bought via the 24-hour hotline on 0844 335 3933 at www.scottishrugby.org