Morrison Returns As Scots Seek Summer Boost

Glasgow Warriors fans" favourite Graeme Morrison will make a welcome return to international rugby on Saturday when he lines up for Scotland in their first EMC Test against Ireland at Murrayfield (kick-off 2.15pm).

The 28-year-old missed this year's RBS 6 Nations Championship with a knee injury sustained in the first leg of the 1872 Cup derby double-header against Edinburgh, but gets his chance to pitch for Rugby World Cup selection in a centre pairing with Joe Ansbro.

Image

Glasgow Warriors fans" favourite Graeme Morrison will make a welcome return to international rugby on Saturday when he lines up for Scotland in their first EMC Test against Ireland at Murrayfield (kick-off 2.15pm).

The 28-year-old missed this year's RBS 6 Nations Championship with a knee injury sustained in the first leg of the 1872 Cup derby double-header against Edinburgh, but gets his chance to pitch for Rugby World Cup selection in a centre pairing with Joe Ansbro.

Three other Warriors, stand-off Ruaridh Jackson, No.8 Johnnie Beattie and lock forward Richie Gray are included in Andy Robinson's starting line-up, with hooker Dougie Hall and second rower Al Kellock named on the bench.

Robinson declared: "In any international match there is always a huge amount at stake, but the EMC Tests take on extra significance this year as we hone our preparations for the start of the world's third biggest sporting event.

"I am a firm believer that competition brings the best out in players and I"ve said to the squad that it lies in their hands to make the case for their inclusion in the final 30 for New Zealand."

Overall, there are five personnel changes from the team that beat Italy at Murrayfield in the closing match of the RBS 6 Nations.

Morrison's return sees Sean Lamont revert to the wing to the exclusion of Simon Danielli.

In the pack, there is a first start at openside for 25-year-old Ross Rennie, whose six caps thus far have been off the bench and whom Robinson has admired and nurtured since his sojourn as Edinburgh coach.

Beattie is given the chance to demonstrate his shoulder woes are behind him at No 8; Alasdair Strokosch comes in at blindside flanker; and Jim Hamilton will start at lock._ The four forwards replace John Barclay, Kelly Brown, Nathan Hines and Kellock respectively.

The team will be led by Rory Lawson, who captained Scotland to victories over reigning world champions South Africa and Samoa at Murrayfield and Pittodrie respectively last November. Vice-captain for the first time will be Edinburgh hooker Ross Ford, who will be winning his 49th cap.

On the bench Robinson has listed two uncapped players, 21-year-old Edinburgh back-row forward David Denton, who has already represented both Scotland 7s and Scotland A; and 23-year-old_ Bath full-back Jack Cuthbert, who has also won promotion from Scotland A.

Scotland team (sponsor RBS) to play Ireland in the EMC Test at Murrayfield on Saturday 6 August, kick-off 2.15pm

15 Chris Paterson (Edinburgh) 104 caps, 22 tries, 162 penalties, 89 conversions, 3 drop goal, 783 points

14 Nikki Walker (Ospreys) 22 caps, 6 tries, 30 points
13 Joe Ansbro (London Irish) 6 caps
12 Graeme Morrison (Glasgow Warriors) 28 caps, 3 tries, 15 points
11 Sean Lamont (Scarlets) 55 caps, 8 tries, 40 points

10 Ruaridh Jackson (Glasgow Warriors) 6 caps, 1 penalty, one conversion, one drop-goal, 8 points
9 Rory Lawson (Gloucester) 27 caps CAPTAIN

1 Allan Jacobsen (Edinburgh) 55 caps
2 Ross Ford (Edinburgh) 48 caps, 2 tries, 10 points VICE-CAPTAIN
3 Geoff Cross (Edinburgh) 5 caps
4 Jim Hamilton (Gloucester) 31 caps, 1 try, 5 points
5 Richie Gray (Glasgow Warriors) 10 caps
6 Alasdair Strokosch (Gloucester) 19 caps, 1 try, 5 points
8 Johnnie Beattie (Glasgow Warriors) 15 caps, 3 tries, 15 points
7 Ross Rennie (Edinburgh) 6 caps

Substitutes

16 Dougie Hall (Glasgow Warriors) 34 caps, 1 try, 5 points
17 Alasdair Dickinson (Sale Sharks) 19 caps
18 Alastair Kellock (Glasgow Warriors) 32 caps, 1 try, 5 points
19 David Denton (Edinburgh) uncapped
20 Greig Laidlaw (Edinburgh) 1 cap
21 Nick De Luca (Edinburgh) 24 caps, 1 try, 5 points
22 Jack Cuthbert (Bath) uncapped

Referee: Wayne Barnes. Assistant referees: Dave Pearson and Stuart Terheege (all RFU). TMO: Geoff Warren (RFU)

Tickets for the EMC Tests are on sale now from www.scottishrugby.org or from the 24 hour credit card hotline 0844 335 3933. They cost from _5 for children and students and from _10 for adults._ You can also buy tickets on the day. Full details HERE.

Saturday's match marks the first time that Scotland have played in their new Canterbury of New Zealand kit, emblazoned with the brand of their new sponsor, RBS.

As part of the occasion RBS and Scottish Rugby have invited representatives from clubs throughout the country to come to Murrayfield to unveil a giant version of the new jersey before kick-off.