Scottish Rugby News and Opinion


Back three worries continue

Ruaridh Jackson - pic © Al Ross
Ruaridh Jackson - pic © Al Ross

Injuries have already troubled Scotland far more in this Six Nations than they have in recent years.

After a brutal test against Wales that left several of their players looking like extras from the General Hospital episode of Blackadder, Scotland are not unscathed themselves.

Back-three trio Tommy Seymour (rib), Blair Kinghorn (ankle) and Stuart Hogg (Peter O’Mahony/shoulder) have been ruled out of this Saturday’s Calcutta Cup match at Twickenham.

Seymour and Kinghorn will now return to the care of their clubs, while Hogg can continue his recovery without forcing it.

Adam Ashe, Tim Swinson, James Johnstone and Luke Crosbie have also been released back to their clubs so you can forget about that Johnson and Johnstone pairing now.

Gregor Townsend has added to the squad for training this week to fill the holes, with Glasgow Warriors fullback Ruaridh Jackson and uncapped (fresh off the 7s circuit) winger Kyle Steyn to the squad. The question is, can they unseat the current starting back three of, um, Adam Hastings, Ali Price and Byron McGuigan?

The silver lining of this news must be that neither Sean Maitland or Darcy Graham have been mentioned in this update, which hopefully means they will be able to play. Jackson could well come into the bench slot with Adam Hastings back to the day job rather than starting at fullback – but it is the Tombola after all…

88 Responses

  1. And Johnstone is back to Edinburgh…

    Apparently Steyn is a better bet than someone laying 15’s for a while?

    If Maitland and Graham are fit, then possibly McGuigan starting with Maitland at 15?

  2. I think Townsend described Graham’s injury as just a knock so I would imagine he is fit to play and hopefully Maitland is back to start at 15 with Graham and McGuigan (who I thought grew into the game pretty well on Saturday) on the wings. None of our back three from our first game of the tournament are fit which sums up the whole tournament pretty well!

    I thought Hastings did really well at 15 when he came on which adds another string to his bow and makes him very handy to have on the bench.

  3. 1st choice (from who is in the squad) would probably be 11 McGuigan 14 Graham 15 Maitland.

    If one of those is out, I would bring Hastings in at 15 and the other 2 on the wing rather than start Jackson who hasn’t been with the squad long enough (and doesn’t offer what we need to have a chance against England).

    1. Don’t knock Jacko. Saw him a few times at 10 for Quins a couple of years ago and for much of the time he was the best back on the park. He’s done a great job at 15 for Glasgow and has loads of much needed experience.
      BTW I see Motormouth Jones hasn’t got over last year and seems to be advocating violence on the pitch on Saturday.
      Makes Mourinho look reasonable and diplomatic.

  4. Idiocy from Toonie to drop Johnstone and not bring in another 13 (no, Kyle Steyn doesn’t count). He just won’t give him a chance. It’s difficult not to question Townsend’s impartiality when he insists on picking Nick Grigg (who’s been dire in attack) while Johnstone has been strong in attack and defence all season. Having likely lost Chris Harris to injury – and yet to DROP Johnstone without replacement – is utterly stupid. Let’s not forget that Johnstone can also cover the wing, too.

    Grigg isn’t international standard. He isn’t suddenly going to have a great game where he evades everyone. Get real and start trying out different options. Also, Mark Bennett and Alex Dunbar are fit now, so where are they? And also…what happened to Richie Gray? Why pick 3-game Steyn over Damien Hoyland?

    Adam Hastings should not be starting on Sunday. He will be targeted repeatedly if so. Look at how England treated Robbie Henshaw! He’s a more experienced full-back, and he was playing at home.

    This would be my team:


    (F Brown, Reid, Z Fagerson, R Gray, Strauss, Laidlaw, Hastings, P Horne)

    …but I imagine that this will be Toonie’s team:

    J Gray

    (F Brown, Reid, Berghan, Toolis, Strauss, Price, P Horne, McGuigan)

    Either that or he’ll do something incredibly Toonie-like, like playing McGuigan at 13 based almost solely on that angle he ran against Wales in the run-up to Darcy’s try, or deciding that the time is right to bring Henry Pyrgos back into the fold.

    1. He won’t do anything like that.
      Look, England think they turn up and avenge last year with a 50 point humping.

      Not the place to chuck James Johnstone or anyone else in if at all avoidable.

      Nick Grigg has been in the squad and capped last summer. He’s the man.

      He has also generally played well, let’s give him credit.

      1. I’d play Johnstone because I think he is the right player for this game. He offers more in attack and defence than Grigg does – and, if we’re going to prove England wrong, we’re going to need to play.

      2. Grigg hasn’t played well at. He has done nothing in attack and while he has mostly made his tackles he is a weak link defensively.

      3. Nick Grigg was good against Wales. Saying he offers nothing in attack is patently nonsense: 28m run and 4 defenders beaten is pretty good against a side who focus on defence above all else. Add to that nine tackles made and zero missed, as well as a great read to stop Jon Davies scoring, and it’s hard to credibly claim that he was poor defensively, either. He’s also been excellent for Warriors. Wee Jimmy has played well for Edinburgh, but has literally zero caps. If you’re picking solely on domestic form, you might give it to Johnstone (not sure I would, though, and I’d be interested to see how their stats compare), but even so it would be madness to hand him his debut against England at Twickenham.

        And I say all that as someone who was wholly unimpressed by Grigg at international level until Saturday.

      4. Grigg has played 2 games opposite Basteraud and Davies and hasn’t missed a tackle and people are saying he is a weak link defensively? He might have a howler at Twickenham but at the moment he has a much better chance against Tuilagi than someone facing their first cap.

      5. Where have you been???? Grigg has played reasonably well – must have been asleep missing that moment

    2. Sam.. You complain that Toonie is making choices based on a Glasgow bias, and then choose 9 Edinburgh players in the starting team. Have you seen the league table?

  5. You do worry how informed fans of Scottish Rugby are. Those asking where Dunbar is perhaps are unaware that through form and injury he has been deemed surplus to requirements at Glasgow and is on loan at Newcastle until the end of the season. He is also currently injured. Bennett has played in two or three games off the bench since coming back from another injury after playing about 15 games in the last 2 years.

    1. Dunbar’s featured for Newcastle Falcons since going out on loan. Bennett may not have played much, but he has played – and he has experience behind his belt. I’m not saying you should call up either of them, because Johnstone should never have been dropped in the first place. But dropping Johnstone gives you an opportunity to bring one of these guys back into the fold…and then you eschew it? Seems brainless to me.

      1. I don’t think Dunbar or Bennett were ever an option at this stage. Dunbar played 2 Premiership Rugby Cup fixtures for Newcastle at the start of February. He hasn’t played a game for over a month now (since 9/2/18). Bennett’s only played 22 minutes so far on the comeback trail off the back of his most recent 6 month plus absence.

  6. Face it, with our current injury list we’ll be damned lucky to get close to a result at Twickenham this year. Perhaps at this stage Toonie’s just trying to blood another player (Steyn) not get any more serious injuries ahead of the World Cup. We don’t want another Barclay level lay off at this point

    1. If we don’t want another Barclay level lay-off, then why even bother playing a team? They’ll just get injured anyway.

      Let’s just field an XV of Marfo, Fenton, McCallum, Cummings, Hunter-Hill, Lewis Wynne, Blair Cowan, Ally Miller, Grayson Hart, Lang, Burleigh, Grigg, Farndale, Nairn and Tom Brown. We won’t win anything, but at least we can’t lose any players to injury that way.

      And yes, I am being facetious.

      1. That really is ridiculous. Players go back to their clubs and will play matches where an injury can easily occur. I’d say managing players is for long term injury prevention and short term weeks out are for the immediate weeks crucial matches. You cannot prevent rugby injuries and guarantee we’ll have no more before world cup.

  7. Sam some of what you say has merit. Putting Johnstone in against France away was probably the best shout if you were going to try him but no one other than players who’ve done it know the jump up in standard etc and Townsend knows that. Hence why Ashe hasn’t been put in recently having played well but I reckon he is worth a shot at 8 soon. But Johnstone at Twickenham for your first start/cap is very risky and could put him back a long way should it go wrong.

    Hastings has proved himself in his coming off the bench in last couple of matches that his form is coming back and would have less fear of him at 15 but it’s still a risk. I would probably put Johnstone on the bench in front of Harris on current form I agree. Grigg was playing so well in the past and wasn’t looked at and I think he did well on Saturday. His performance against France had two really bad obvious handlings errors in attack which is crucial but did he have a bad match overall? I’d be interested to see his stats for Saturday. He wasn’t outstanding but did he make an error? I think he was above Horne on performance on Saturday.

    In terms of Bennet and Dunbar. I don’t know what has happened to Dunbar but obviously the coaches see he has fallen off a cliff but yes I’d say he would do a job against a massive England. Bennet hasn’t started yet for club has he and it would be just the thing that he comes back in and we have an injury crisis like Saturday and indeed like Twickenham two years ago and he comes on and he’s out for another two years. But I agree they have to be considered.

    No idea why Richie Gray isn’t on the bench though. He’s worth a shot and he may be the difference in that area. Our line-out was much much better on Saturday (12 from 12 although did Wales try to compete or not) but will come under pressure against England I’d imagine. Hopefully Skinner comes in I think he is well worth a start again and gives us cover in back row. Watson has to start.

    1. Yes it is the Calcutta Cup and Engerland etc etc but let’s face it this tournament is now a write-off. Calling up players who haven’t been involved in the squad yet with just a week to get familiar with systems and combinations, before a potential spanking by the Auld Enemy anyway, isn’t something I would imagine Toony is considering. R Gray will be involved in the summer if he stays fit, it’s a given. There’s nothing we/he can learn this week so he’s better focusing on building form in France. Dunbar is essentially the same, as is Bennett. There’s a good chance they will be involved again if they can get fit and stay there, same for Taylor. It’s the last week of the campaign, Toony will want to learn more about the guys he has picked and how they cope in (severe) adversity rather than do something aimed at salvaging the un-salvageable…
      Sam Skinner, on the other hand, we need to see more of and would expect him to get a shot.

      1. I agree we should give the young guys that are in the squad on current form a shot now – they can’t do much worse than some of those that have been playing the last couple of games.

        OK, you run the risk of knocking a players confidence (although I’m not sure that excuse is always valid), but I don’t think there is much to lose and it could be the emergence of a real talent.

        I think this tournament Townsend has been overly conservative with replacements for injured players – picking out of form or more experienced players that are steady but not special over young players with huge potential. Possibly a backlash to the criticism he got in the past for being too experimental.

        So many other teams are willing to give talented youngsters a chance in big games and will drop players that aren’t on form, I think we have really suffered from not doing this.

        I don’t want him to go crazy, but there are 3 or 4 youngsters that really deserve to play against England.

  8. 15-Peter Dods, 14-Jim Pollock, 13- Jim Renwick, 12-Keith Robertson, 11- Roger Baird, 10-John Rutherford, 9-Roy Laidlaw, 8-John Beattie, 7- David Leslie, 6-Jim Calder, 5-Iain Paxton, 4-Tom Smith, 3 – Iain Milne, 2- Colin Deans, 1- Jim Aitken(c).

    Coach Jim Telfer.

    That should do it.

    1. A team of sexagenarians coached by a radging octogenarian?
      You might be onto something……

    2. Brilliant!!!! Can’t wait now. It’s almost a guaranteed win now I’d say!!!!

    3. OK, so let’s go fantasy then from stars of the new millenium:

      E. Murray
      S. Murray
      J. Leslie

      1. Smith

        Dickinson, McInally, Nel, R.Gray, Brown, Cusiter, Townsend, Paterson

    4. Genuine nostalgia rush reading that! What a gift it would be to see them all playing again at their prime.

  9. If we could draft in one player for the World Cup, which of the players in Alanyst’s and DesT’s teams would make the biggest difference to Scotland’s team in 2019?

    Perhaps Alan Tait? If we didn’t have two very good 7s, I might go for David Leslie.

    1. Calder. Though Ritchie could be the modern day equivalent on his current trajectory.

      1. Iain Milne. No shenanigans at the scrum just raw strength and technique. Worth 6 points in penalties a game.

  10. My first post, so go easy!
    As a tier one nation with two pro teams only, are we honestly all so surprised by this situation? Injuries have come into sharper focus in recent years, rightly so (particularly HIA’s), but to give game time to our international players, competitors for club/country and blood emerging talent from two teams is a big ask. Vern Cotter was never hit this hard with injuries, over the last season our front row, back row and back devision have been decimated, and I think a third pro team would help build the depth required immensely.
    I do find it strange though that James Johnstone hasn’t been capped during this campaign, and for him to be dropped out of the squad seems harsh. Neither Dean nor Johnstone had good games against Benetton but no ones perfect, Townsend himself was infurating at times as a player! Steyn puzzles me though, I’d far rather see Hoyland or Nairn given a chance. Steyn has played two, maybe three games for the Warriors?! Lastly, Ben Vellacott and Rory Hutcheson? The latter has done well this season with Northampton, Toonies old club!, a close up look in camp wouldn’t have gone a miss, and I bet Vellacott wishes he’d decided to play as he’d have had game time this season.

    1. There is a good chance that Steyn has been brought in for practice. He’s really big and really fast like most of the English backs.

      1. Steyn isn’t that big….
        on wiki listed as
        6′ 2″
        Weight: 209 lbs
        Average, if that’s accurate.

  11. Grigg offered little in attack on Saturday. So bloody predictable he can only try and burst through gaps. Sometimes he gets it right for glasgow and he looks good. But he’s had two chances for Scotland and not taken them. Compare his contribution to Graham’s. It’s light and day. So it had to be Johnstone but no it ain’t going to happen, and what rubbish Referendum about having a first cap at Twickenham there’s more pressure on debut at Murrayfield my friend.

    1. Not sure what would constitute an awful humping for this one? A 20 point loss, being nilled or having our pants pulled down, set on fire and handed back to us in an urn at the after match dinner.

      Lets just turn up. Give a performance. Hope their pants catch fire and get home without any more injuries.

      1. I hope we just throw out a super physical side and use our forwards to dominate them, essentially play 10 man rugby with Darcy hitting lines.

        Try keep the scores close as long as possible & who knows what happens.

  12. Just too much dread on here about Twickenham on Saturday. OK, I’m not expecting a win, but I do think we can put a pack out that can front up in this Calcutta Cup. If up front, we can re-find and maintain a full-on 80 minute performance on Saturday, it is possible that at the very least we won’t get battered up front – and then anything can happen.
    England were written off before Ireland.
    Wales were written off before England.
    In both cases, power, aggression and doggedness upset the experts’ and fans’ predictions.
    As I say, not expecting a win, but I’d quite happily see a full-0n battle up front and us scrape it 3-6.
    This England team is good – but they’re not the bloody Immortals ffs.

    1. I’d say those are both examples of game plan victories rather than doggedness victories.

      1. Of course there was game plan at work. Something we’ve not been so good at devising and/or implementing in recent Tests. My main point is we are capable of putting a pack out that won’t get bullied on Saturday. Which is at least half the battle, especially at Twickenham, which is notorious for a quietening crowd when they’re not rolling the opposition over up front.

    2. Tbf we have pretty much close to our full strength pack now which has arguably more power without Barclay/Wilson (not Denton)

      Just need to keep improving the players who have returned from injury.

      1. Which is the bigger worry for me. Id like big Richie back in over his brother at the moment but that aside you are probably right. And we have been second best in the last three games up front.

      2. Have we been second best up front? We weren’t against Ireland or Wales. Well, unless you’re using “streetwiseness” as a measure…

  13. I don’t know what has happened to Dunbar but obviously, the coaches see he has fallen off a cliff but yes I’d say he would do a job against a massive England.

  14. If you want to throw raw leftfield centre selections from the Northampton Saints to Manu and co at Twickers then Fraser Dingwall is s better prospect than Rory Hutchinson!
    Oh what’s that tapping I can hear?
    Is it the sound of Google?
    Is it the birth of the ‘drop Grigg for Dingwall’ movement?
    Failing that Fraser Strachan is even younger and more undercooked.
    Or maybe Cameron Redpath.
    In fact I’m quite surprised the movement for Redpath hasn’t started.
    I’m sure some of these guys will feature for us one day.

  15. 1. Dell
    2. Brown
    3. Fagerson
    4. Gilchrist
    5. Skinner
    6. Ritchie
    7. Watson (C)
    8. Bradbury

    9. Price
    10. Russell
    11. Graham
    12. Johnson
    13. Hastings
    14. Mcguigan
    15. Maitland

    16. Mcinally
    17. Allan
    18. Nel
    19. R.Gray/J.Gray
    20. Strauss
    21. G.Horne
    22. Mcdowall
    23. Jackson

    No weak links.

    1. Don’t mind the look of that team at all, Neil. As long as Brown doesn’t get sent off again!

      1. Out of interest. What did Bradbury do on Sat? Not getting at him but just didn’t notice.did he have a good game? Ppl were saying he was poor against French but who wasn’t? seems folks have accepted that he’s good enough in a week. Not saying I agree or not but seems a big turn around.

      2. I dont think there is someone who can fill that Number 8 role close to Denton atm unfortunately, Strauss is quality but feels like he is in the twilight of his career, Bradbury seems to have abit better workrate & passion about him but can also do the big carry which can change the momentum of a game.

        Still see him as a perfect 6 in the long run similar to Jerome Kaino, I would like to see how he matches up physically to Vunipola this weekend though & it would hugely boost his WC chances if he shows he can have an impact at the top level there.

      3. Bradbury is now 115kg so only Denton is bigger in terms of players available to Scotland. I think he’s our best bet as a carrier outside of Dents and Strauss and it’s good to see we can still bring through a ‘hoom groon’ player of this ilk.

      4. Referendum

        Apart from when he was stripped I thought Bradbury had an OK match, made some yards and defended the tight exchanges well. He’s 3 games into his return and with that in mind he’s done OK.

        I’d have him at 8 for Sat with Skinner at 6 as I thought Strauss was back to his mediocre best – he carries like a mahogany wardrobe and the English will happily smash him back all day on Sat.

      5. Bradbury made 39m from 15 carries and beat three defenders (including running over Moriarty and Parkes, I think), and also made 13 tackles, missing 0. Not bad at all.

      6. Bradbury had a decent game I thought. Carried hard and straight and crossed the gain line which almost nobody else did.

    2. What about R Gray?
      Not sure if Toonie will pick him but he’s a big unit who can carry. Getting to the prime age for a lock. Having been around for a decade which just emphasises how young he was when first picked!
      Like Stu2’s idea of Skinner on the flank. Might mean R Gray can come into it.

      1. I would have R.Gray straight into the 15 but there is no chance of him featuring this week, he would have been in the squad by now if he was being considered.

        Im convinced Townsend has told him to just focus on his club and build some continuity and gain gametime.

        100% if he stays fit he will be in the WC squad.

  16. I like that team Neil except Mcinally in for Brown. It’s important Hastings starts – somewhere. He’s got the x factor and Twickenham won’t faze him. However this is far too risky for GT so forget seeing him at 13.

    1. Why dont we just play Hastings at tighthead – extra mobility and he wont be fazed by Twickenham at all.

      1. Stu if you disagree with someones point why not put a valid argument across instead of trolling & attempting to lower the quality of the blog ?

        What reaction are you trying to achieve with that comment ?

        My arguement for Hastings at 13 is based on the lack of quality available atm, the fact he has all the attributes including a powerful running game & has the big game mentality.
        I recognise he lacks experience and that it is a big risk … but look at where we are, we need to take risks to have any hope of winning this match.

      2. Conversely what reaction are the endless and never-going-to-happen stream of “we should play X at Y” suggestions looking to achieve? IMO they lower the quality of the blog more, by making the readership look like they know nothing about rugby positions (this comment won’t age well when Hastings is picked in the second row for the weekend).

        As he wasn’t being offensive or personal, merely poking fun, it’s within the limits.

    2. Hastings should only be at 15 if injuries mean we have no choice. He definitely should not be at outside centre.
      It looks like Maitland will be fit and he has played full back both at s-15 level and for us so he’ll be at 15 with Hastings on the bench.
      Grigg will be at 13. He’ll tackle Manu and if he gets a gap, go through it. That’s all we need him to do.
      The reason Wales difficult to break down wasn’t lack of skill in the backs, it was that their defense is very organised and they slowed our ball in their half (sometimes illegally) giving them time to reset.
      For us to give England a game requires our forwards to supply quick ball for the whole 80. Even with all the injuries the backs are good enough to score off quick ball.
      Trouble is England know that’s our game and their big bulky forwards will be set to slow things down.

      1. The problem comes if our wingers aren’t fit – apparently McGuigan has a broken rib….

        Assuming Graham is ok he fills one spot, but then we could be left with Steyn being the only other fit winger in the squad.

        I would argue that Maitland on the wind and Hastings at fullback would be preferable to this.

      2. I’m sure I heard dougie fife was injured could be wrong. Lee Jones was injured not sure status.

  17. Based on the squad page on the SRU site there is a squad of 34 remaining:

    Bhatti, Dell
    Brown, McInally, Stewart
    Berghan, Fagerson, Nel

    Gilchrist, Gray, Skinner, Toolis

    Bradbury, Fagerson, Graham, Ritchie, Strauss, Watson

    Laidlaw, Price, Pyrgos
    Hastings, Russell

    Grigg, Harris, Horne, Johnson, McDowall

    Graham, Hughes, Jackson, McGuigan, Maitland, Steyn

      1. Not listed on the squad page – which is otherwise up-to-date in having Steyn, Jackson and the injured players all being recently removed. Been no official announcement that Reid has been released though.

      1. Yeah. Very raw. Also big, fast and mental which can be a reasonable place to begin.
        I suppose he’d have 50 caps by now if it was gonna happen.

      2. Rory Hughes= Sean Lamont in his latter playing years

        Loads of grit, energy and hard as nails but lacks pace and a bit predictable and liable to fling a wild pass. Sadly not international class I think.

  18. Lamont was raw too. You could tell he only took the game seriously later in life.
    It was his decision making. Basically – look up and run.
    Still, had some great games. His brother was more rounded but couldn’t stay off the surgeon’s table.

  19. Just listened to Ryan Wilson on The Rugby Pod… he was so much more likeable than that bitter little so and so Danny Care. Care was just petulant and childish. And he’s rubbish, anyway… It was a good laugh, and the only thing worth listening to on that catastrophe of a podcast.

    Another highlight was Ugo Monye saying Scotland had no injuries going into the 6N. What a muppet.

    1. Yeh i particularly enjoyed Wilson winding up Care & the English to no end.

      You can tell the english genuinely hate him.

      1. Which is deliciously ironic given they’ve the likes of Care, Brown, Itoje et al., all of whom are at least as bad as Wilson on the pitch. Also, how freakin’ thin-skinned do the England boys sound?! Next they’ll be claiming they said, “Tim Cook Apple”, but the “Cook” bit was really fast…

      1. You’re right, it’s Rugby Union Weekly. I apologise to Big Jim and Even Bigger Goodie, as their show’s quite decent.

    2. ‘no injuries’….what an idiot.
      Enjoy his grudge match v Scotlands reserve team!

    3. Quite like that show (Rugby union weekly); I listen most weeks. Often England-biased but I guess that’s the bulk of the listeners. Monye is balanced and usually talks sense but Danny Care is a t**t however and he’s rapidly joining that list of rugby players that Scots love to hate (L Williams, K Earls, Itoje, Farrell, etc). Ryan Wilson was brilliant. Whether you rate him as a player or not (and I do), he’s very entertaining in the media.

      1. Ryan Wilson was hilarious and you could almost hear Care’s teeth grinding which shows just how good Wilson is at his job.

        I would disagree with you about Liam Williams though, I used to think he was annoying but in his interview that was aired before the Scotland match I thought he came across as a really humble and down to earth guy.

      2. He still dives to much for my liking, better than the rest of the scum though, I would replace him on the scum list with mike brown along with Sinkler

        Ironically i think this English side are the least arrogant though, they can back up there talk & a few of them are not ‘entitled’/up there own ass.

        The Vunipolas/Tuilagi for example.

    4. Every time Danny Care brings up last year’s match, he can’t stop himself from sounding bitter. It genuinely eats at him. I actually thought it was great drama, nicely teed up by Monye, to bring Ryan Wilson onto the podcast. Monye and Care are mates, but I think Monye stitched him up as it sounded like Care didn’t know Wilson was coming on. Worth a listen.

      Monye’s ‘no injuries’ comment was obviously ridiculous, but I think it was just a slip. I usually find him and Chris Jones knowledgable, reasonable and interesting to listen to. They’re sometimes tough on Scotland but no tougher than a lot of Scottish fans and pundits.

      1. It was pretty uncomfortable how uncomfortable Mr Care was. Incredibly childish. Ryan Wilson has got him undr his spell for the rest of his career now. Wilson has him completely. Whatever way the result on Saturday goes next week’s stand off will be fun.

        Ugo did mention injuries and how many we’ve got so must have been a mistake. Hes aware how badly we’ve been hit.

        England only have Ben youngs at scrum half with Robson, care and wiggo all injured. Really inexperienced chap comes in. Would be ashame if youngs had to go off early wouldn’t it?

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