Scotland confirm summer tour plans to close 2020/21 season

Scotland confirm summer tour plans to close 2020/21 season

Scotland will play three matches in this summer’s tour programme under Interim Head Coach Mike Blair.

The three matches will see Scotland A play opponents, who have yet to be confirmed, in late June before the full national team heads to Europe to face Romania on 10 July and Georgia on 17 July in Test matches. Kick-off times, venues and broadcast arrangements are to be confirmed.

The tour will coincide with the British & Irish Lions’ tour to South Africa which will involve Scotland Head Coach Gregor Townsend and Assistant Coach (defence) Steve Tandy.

A number of Scotland players are also tipped to be on the Lions trip enabling Scotland’s three match summer tour to provide an opportunity for the coaching team to work with a wider group of players.

Interim Head Coach, Mike Blair, who has been part of the Scotland coaching group since 2017 as Assistant Coach (attack), will be joined by Scotland forwards coach John Dalziel and scrum coach, Pieter de Villiers.

Glasgow Warriors coach, former FOSROC Super6 Head Coach and Scotland internationalist Peter Murchie will also join the coaching team covering defence, which will aim to deliver continuity with the existing structures and philosophies that have seen the Scotland side return one of the most improved defences in the world game in recent years.

Scottish Rugby’s Director of High Performance, Jim Mallinder, will also join the tour to support the new coaching group.

Interim Head Coach, Mike Blair, said: “I’d like to thank Gregor and Jim for this opportunity to lead the Scotland summer tour and I’m looking forward to continuing to build the positive culture and results we have achieved in recent months.

“This tour gives us the chance to work with a wider group of players and see how they can step up into the international game, whilst also continuing to look to improve with our established Scotland players.

“The three matches will present very different challenges and as a squad and coaching group we will be looking to continue to create depth and competition for places within strong team performances.”

Scottish Rugby’s Director of High Performance, Jim Mallinder, said: “In what will be a busy summer of rugby I am pleased we will have three meaningful fixtures for Scotland in the summer tour window.

“The opportunity to put out a Scotland A side enables the coaches to see and work with a wider group of players with an eye on the future, before we face two test matches, away from home, against quality opposition in Georgia and Romania.

“It also gives me personally a chance to spend time with coaches and players which will help develop those important relationships and connections that come with spending an extended period of time together.”

Scotland’s last two meeting with Romania came in Rugby World Cup competitions in 2007 and 2011 respectively. Scotland beat Romania at Murrayfield 42-0 in 2007 and contested a closer match in Invercargill in 2011 with a 34-24 win.

Scotland most recently faced Georgia in a warm-up to the 2020 Autumn Nations Cup at BT Murrayfield and recorded a 48-7 win. The team’s last visit to Georgia was in 2019 in the build-up to Rugby World Cup and again Scotland secured victory by 10-44 in Tbilisi. A week later the two teams met again at BT Murrayfield with the Scots winning 36-9.

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