Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


The end of the road for two Scotland stalwarts?

Sean Lamont - pic © Al Ross
Sean Lamont - pic © Al Ross

Two Scotland veterans look like they may have played their final games for their country, after missing out on the Six Nations squad.

There will have been delight for the likes of Cornell Du Preez, Simon Berghan, Matt Scott and Jon Welsh this week when they received the call to inform them of their inclusion.

Scottish Rugby (@Scotlandteam) posted this picture of the Six Nations squad on social media on Wednesday morning.

For Berghan, the added delight that it is his first involvement. However, there will have been some disappointed players who have missed out but not through injury – none more so than fellow prop, Moray Low.

The Exeter Chief has been dropped by Vern Cotter after putting in a trio of sub-standard performances in the Autumn tests, with Berghan and resurgent Newcastle tighthead Welsh both now seemingly above him in the pecking order.

The 32-year-old has been used mainly on the loosehead side this season by his club coach Rob Baxter, and that may have hindered his displays when called up on the opposite side in the dark blue.

Where does he go from here? It is hard to see how Low, who was first capped against France in 2009, will regain his place in the national set-up, with the likes of Zander Fagerson, Welsh and WP Nel first-choice at their clubs and getting regular game time.

That trio offer a lot in the loose – as seen by Welsh’s much lauded chip-and-chase last weekend, and Nel’s memorable 40m dash to the line against Leinster, albeit a few years ago now. There are also a trickle of young props coming through now too who are starting to figure in the Pro and domestic scene.

There was a sliver of hope for Low with the announcement today that Nel has been ruled out of the 6 Nations, having damaged an intervertebral disc in his neck during a “significant collision” in the Harlequins game. Extra props may yet be required…

Meanwhile, for 105-cap Glasgow wing Sean Lamont, it seems like it could be the end of a long international journey.

Lamont, who debuted against Samoa 12-and-a-half years ago, has now missed out on three successive squads – although he was added to the summer touring party as injury cover.

He turned 36 this week, and with Lee Jones and Rory Hughes currently ahead of him at club level in the race to partner Tommy Seymour, and Damien Hoyland now preferred as the go-to 5th wing internationally, it seems unlikely Lamont will overtake Chris Paterson as the country’s most-capped player of all time barring a couple of serious injuries.

Lamont has never given less than full effort and has seen multiple coaching and playing careers come and go including that of his brother Rory. Passionately committed to whatever shirt he is wearing, he is unlikely to officially hang up his international boots until he calls time on his playing career; big Sean will always be ready for the call.

If this is to be the end of the international road for a duo who share 142 Test caps, both will look back on their time in the dark blue jersey with much fondness.

Low was part of the squad that helped Scotland to victory over Australia in 2009, and played in the series win over Argentina the following year.

Lamont, meanwhile, scored 14 tries for his country and has played in three World Cups (2007, 2011 and 2015).

22 Responses

  1. There is a time to start and a time to stop. Moray will know it already, a combination of age and a changing game have caught up with him.

    Sean Lamont has been inspirational, you just know he will give 100%. Sadly his time co-incided with some of our gloomiest years however he has shone throughout.

    Still turning in a shift at Glasgow I hope to see him for a while yet. When he steps on the park, you know you will get nothing but his best.

    Let us wish these lads all the best for the future .

    1. Completely agree about Lamont’s time coincided with some of our worst spells, but Lamont was excellent in the early-2000s and has done a shift credably in more recent times.
      Notice he’s slipped way down the Glasgow pecking order -Murchie preferred on the bench tomorrow – might be the end full stop come May

      1. It is an rare maybe even unprecidented for a wing to be at this level aged 36 .

        Being released at the end of the season might just open a new chapter for Sean. I think he is the sort that will see that as an opportunity.

        I could see him doing the Andy Goode thing and picking up short term contracts or even going overseas for a swansong. USA immediately springs to mind .

        Whereever he goes , he will not be short of a good reference.

  2. Jones and Hastings in for Glasgow. But Nel out for 6 nations. All go today on the beeb!

  3. Age seems to be finally catching up with the Venerable Sean these days. He has not featured much for Glasgow this season, largely due to injury and Toonie’s understandable desire to see what some of the youngsters look like in action. He would probably be on the bench tomorrow against the Tigers if he did not have a back injury.

    It seems more than likely that this will be his last season and hopefully we will get to see him have a few more run outs before his time is done. As it has already been said, never gives less than 100% and he will have been a good man to have around the Glasgow squad this year, even if he is not playing very much.

    A fantastic servant for club and country.

  4. As the others have said Sean Lamont has been a real star when things were pretty grim. We’ve seen him terrorise Italian backs to the point the team collapsed, join many a maul and even the odd scrum. Fantastic player.

  5. If ever there was an indictment of the state of our national team since 99 it is that a player of Lamonts mediocrity earned 142 caps. No disrespect to his ethic but for any other home nation he would have been lucky to get passed 20 caps in the same period. To a lesser extent I’d say the same for Paterson.

    1. The 142 caps is between Lamont AND Low. Have to say that I would disagree on Paterson, he was an incredible goal kicker and a pretty useful full back. Not his fault he was playing with journeyman backs like Godman, DiRollo and co

      1. If Paterson was world class he would have made it into what were fairly mediocre lions squads during his peak. His boot was exceptional but he was a competent 15 at best and fly half, who knows but he never really looked like one for me. Paterson in his prime wouldn’t get into the current Scotland 15, 23 probably but not 15

  6. Lamont was/is a credit to himself, never let himself down, not a great player but squeezed every last bit of potential/whatever out of himself. Part of a very ordinary period in Scottish rugby (I KNOW!!!!!!!!)

  7. 2 most memorable moments of lamont 1. chasing down jamie roberts in cardiff, 2. him smashing those fijians

    1. …..and running over Tomasso like an artic in the move that led to Dunbar’s second try in the Stadio Olimpico in 2014 6N.

  8. just been watching some of the huw jones highlights videos again. now weve seen it works at international level the class, the steps, the feel for the ball is frightening – him plus hogg plus russell plus dunbar plus seymour plus maitland beats any backline in the 6 nations surely?

    wonder who gets the nod tomorrow pyrgos or price. has to be a chance for pyrgos?

    not so worried about nel – fagerson will step up again. just have to be out of sight in games come bench time!

    hats off to sean lamont for often being a decent player in the days of parks and de rollo. id have said sod that and stayed down the pub. but a man who sticks with a peroxide look in the public eye is gonna be stronger than most

  9. Age catches up with all of us unfortunately, but Sean has been a fantastic servant for Scotland. I loved his two tries against France in 2006, I also remember him scoring 4 in a game for Northampton.

    Perhaps not the most gifted of players but he always gave 100%, plus he’s a Perth lad which means he’s automatically a class act!

  10. As a superstitious sport fan, I have noticed that Glasgow’s 2 defeats in Europe have been when the game is on Sky, the others were on BT and we won. So that begs the question, Is Rupert Murdoch the reason for our defeats?

    *Also good news the Leicester game is on BT

  11. I remember a wee while ago Sean said he wasn’t going to retire from international rugby but would gracefully step aside when his services were no longer required. It says something about the quality we now have in the team that big Sean is no longer required. An honest basher there have been many more skillful players but few can match the heart he plays with, sometimes in Scotland’s dark days he looked like the only one that cared. Maybe its not the end of the road, I wouldn’t disagree if he was included in the squad and he may yet appear if injuries strike, he’s a safe pair of hands who can cover multiple positions. Having said that I remember being at a game years ago where he was having a torrid time under high balls, he dropped god knows how many, when he eventually caught one a huge cheer erupted from the stands, he greeted it with a wry grin and a wave.

    1. Anyone got a working stream? Currently gritting my teeth through through racing v Munster. Silly q it’s not on alba is it?

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Scottish Rugby News and Opinion