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Scotland coach Gregor Townsend makes five changes for Italy





  • Scotland face Italy in Rome for their final Six Nations clash of 2018 on Saturday
  • Coach Gregor Townsend has made five changes from the side that lost in Ireland 
  • Tommy Seymour and Nick Grigg replace Blair Kinghorn and Peter Horne 
  • There are three swaps in pack, with WP Nel, Fraser Brown and Tim Swinson in

By Press Association Sport Staff

Published: 09:46 EDT, 14 March 2018 | Updated: 11:10 EDT, 14 March 2018

Gregor Townsend has rung the changes to his Scotland line-up as they look to end the NatWest 6 Nations on a high against Italy on Saturday.

The Dark Blues' faint title hopes were extinguished with defeat to Ireland last weekend so Townsend has decided to freshen up his starting XV, making five alterations to the side that will kick-off in Rome.

Wing Tommy Seymour returns from injury to replace Blair Kinghorn — who marked his first international start with a try in that 28-8 defeat in Dublin.

Gregor Townsend has named his Scotland side for their final Six Nations clash against Italy
Gregor Townsend has named his Scotland side for their final Six Nations clash against Italy

Gregor Townsend has named his Scotland side for their final Six Nations clash against Italy

Glasgow centre Nick Grigg also makes his first Championship start as he takes over from Pete Horne, who has paid the price the blunder which sent Joe Schmidt's men on their way to victory, as he drops to the bench.

Townsend has made three further changes to the pack, with hooker Fraser Brown, prop Willem Nel and lock Tim Swinson all promoted from the bench in place of Stuart McInally, Simon Berghan and Grant Gilchrist.

Lock Richie Gray and prop Zander Fagerson could also make their first appearances of the campaign having shrugged off injuries to be named amongst the substitutes.

Scotland head coach Townsend, said: 'We've had a deeper look at the Ireland game, where we performed well in areas that will have to be better this weekend.

Winger Tommy Seymour returns from injury and takes the place of Blair Kinghorn
Winger Tommy Seymour returns from injury and takes the place of Blair Kinghorn

Winger Tommy Seymour returns from injury and takes the place of Blair Kinghorn

'There were a number of positives in how we took the game to Ireland in

attack and defence but this didn't lead to us scoring enough points to win the game.

'We've been pleased with how the players have responded to last week's disappointment, with the energy they have brought to training and a determination to improve our performance in our final match in this year's NatWest 6 Nations.

'Playing Italy will be a very tough game - it always has been for any Scotland side.

 'We are ready for the challenge and have an experienced group of players working hard to finish our campaign with a positive performance and result.'

Willem Nel will return to the front row for Scotland in one of three changes in the pack
Willem Nel will return to the front row for Scotland in one of three changes in the pack

Willem Nel will return to the front row for Scotland in one of three changes in the pack

 


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