Two changes to face New Zealand this Saturday

Two changes to face New Zealand this Saturday

Head Coach Gregor Townsend has made two injury-enforced changes to the Scotland team named to start against New Zealand this Saturday at BT Murrayfield (kick-off 5.15pm) – live on BBC and BT Sport.

The changes come in the forward pack, where prop Zander Fagerson and back-row Cornell du Preez have been promoted from the bench in place of injured pair WP Nel and Ryan Wilson. It will be du Preez’ first start for Scotland.

Nel was ruled out of the autumn series at the beginning of the week, having fractured his arm in Saturday’s win over Samoa (44-38), while Wilson has failed to recover sufficiently from a shoulder injury sustained in the same game.

Simon Berghan and uncapped Luke Hamilton have been named in the vacated places on the bench, with lock Grant Gilchrist replacing the injured Tim Swinson (hand), another to be invalided out of the autumn campaign.

Finally, Townsend has selected uncapped Sale Sharks wing Byron McGuigan as the back-three replacement, in place of Chris Harris, who debuted last week.

Scotland Head Coach, Gregor Townsend, said: “The players are looking forward to getting back out on the pitch after last weekend’s high-scoring match against Samoa, which highlighted a few areas we’ve sought to improve this week at training.

“The task of facing New Zealand is one of the biggest challenges in sport and one that our players relish. They have been in brilliant form this season and continue to set very high standards whenever they play.”

An unchanged back division sees Ali Price partner Finn Russell at half-back and Alex Dunbar and Huw Jones in midfield, with vice-captain Stuart Hogg accompanied by Tommy Seymour and Lee Jones in the back-three.

In the pack, last weekend’s debutant Darryl Marfo (prop) and two-time try scorer and man-of-the-match winning hooker Stuart McInally join Fagerson in the front-row, Ben Toolis returns with Jonny Gray – who takes on the vice captaincy from the injured Wilson – at lock, with Hamish Watson and captain John Barclay combining with du Preez in the back-row.

Scotland team to play New Zealand at BT Murrayfield

Saturday 18 November (kick-off 5.15pm) – live on BBC / BT Sport

15. Stuart Hogg VICE CAPTAIN (Glasgow Warriors) – 54 caps

14. Tommy Seymour (Glasgow Warriors) – 37 caps
13. Huw Jones (Glasgow Warriors) – 9 caps
12. Alex Dunbar (Glasgow Warriors) – 27 caps
11. Lee Jones (Glasgow Warriors) – 6 caps

10. Finn Russell (Glasgow Warriors) – 30 caps
9. Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors) – 9 caps

1. Darryl Marfo (Edinburgh Rugby) – 1 cap
2. Stuart McInally (Edinburgh Rugby) – 10 caps
3. Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors) – 13 caps
4. Ben Toolis (Edinburgh Rugby) – 5 caps
5. Jonny Gray VICE CAPTAIN (Glasgow Warriors) – 36 caps
6. John Barclay CAPTAIN (Scarlets) – 64 caps
7. Hamish Watson (Edinburgh Rugby) – 13 caps
8. Cornell du Preez (Edinburgh Rugby) – 3 caps

16. George Turner (Glasgow Warriors) – 1 cap
17. Jamie Bhatti (Glasgow Warriors) – 1 cap
18. Simon Berghan (Edinburgh Rugby) – 3 caps
19. Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh Rugby) – 16 caps
20. Luke Hamilton (Leicester Tigers) – uncapped
21. Henry Pyrgos (Glasgow Warriors) – 25 caps
22. Pete Horne (Glasgow Warriors) – 26 caps

23. Byron McGuigan (Sale Sharks) – uncapped

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