Under-20 squad named for Championship home debut

Scotland under-20 have named a settled squad to take on their Welsh counterparts at Netherdale this Friday (13 February, kick-off 5.55pm).

Ruairi Howarth will represent Scotland under-20 in his hometown, Gala, this weekendHead coach Sean Lineen has made only two changes to the starting XV from the team who played France under-20,  in the opening round of the 6 Nations Championship, last Saturday (7 February).  

In the pack, moving off the bench and into the starting back-row is Neil Irvine-Hess, replacing the injured Lewis Wynne. BT Sport Level 3 Academy player, Andrew Davidson, comes into the match-day 23 and fills the freed-up spot in the dugout.

The only change in the starting back-line comes as Currie's Ruaraidh Smith replaces club mate Harvey Elms on the wing.

Ben Robbins is added to the replacements, taking the number 23 shirt, after being brought into the training squad earlier this week.

Exeter University prop Jack Owlett, is drafted into the squad, to replace Gary Robertson who sustained a head-knock in training, and is joined by Ally Miller of Watsonians on the substitutions list.

Lineen said: "We've made a few changes, both tactical and due to injuries.

"Some boys have been given a chance to show what they can do at this level, and we hope that they seize their opportunity.

"It's unfortunate that Lewis [Wynne] and Gary [Robertson] are unavailable for selection, but we know that we have the quality and depth in our ranks to replace them, and the value they hold in the squad.”  

Scotland under-20 fell to a 47-6 defeat against a strong France team in Gueugnon, yet the squad and coaching staff were encouraged by parts of the performance, and are looking to build on positives for the game against Wales.

Lineen added:"It's all part of a learning curve for the players, and there were a lot of lessons learned from our first game of the Championship last week. Now it's about how we take that experience on board and use it to aid our development as a team.

"We are aware of the strength and threat Wales possess, especially after their good victory over England in their opening match, but we have the talent to really compete.

"It's also our first home game which will serve as a real boost to the players. You can never underestimate what a home tie can do for a team, especially when the atmosphere is in their favour, so we're really looking to get a great crowd down at Netherdale to get behind the stars of the future.”

Scotland under-20 v Wales under-20, 6 Nations Championship, Netherdale, kick-off 5.55pm

15. Ruairi Howarth (Edinburgh Rugby/Gala)
14. Ruaraidh Smith (Currie)
13. Archie Russell (Stirling County)
12. Patrick Kelly (Le Parc)
11. Alec Coombes (London Scottish)

10. Rory Hutchinson (Northampton Saints)
9. George Horne (Glasgow Hawks)

1. Murray McCallum (Aberdeen Grammar Rugby)*
2. Ross Graham (Hawick)
3. Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors/Glasgow Hawks)
4. Scott Cummings (Glasgow Warriors/Glasgow Hawks)
5. Lewis Carmichael (Melrose)*
6. Neil Irvine-Hess (Melrose)
7. Jamie Ritchie (Edinburgh Rugby)
8. Magnus Bradbury (Edinburgh Rugby/Boroughmuir)


16. Jake Kerr (Edinburgh Rugby/Watsonians)
17. Dan Elkington (Watsonians)
18. Jack Owlett (Exeter University)
19. Andrew Davidson (Glasgow Warriors/Glasgow Hawks)
20. Ally Miller (Edinburgh Rugby/Watsonians)
21. Andrew Manson (Stewart's Melville FP)
22. Tom Galbraith (Melrose)
23. Ben Robbins (Edinburgh Rugby/Watsonians)

 *sportscotland institute of sport supported player 2014/15