Six Nations

Scotland call up Cuthbert

2014-02-17 19:31
Jack Cuthbert (Getty Images)

London - Edinburgh utility back Jack Cuthbert was called up on Monday into the Scotland squad ahead of this weekend's potential Six Nations wooden spoon decider against Italy in Rome.

The 26-year-old, who can play at either full-back or wing, will bolster Scotland's back division after New Zealand-born flyer Sean Maitland was ruled out of the remainder of the tournament following knee and ankle injuries in the Dark Blues' opening defeat by Ireland.

Cuthbert won his lone cap against Ireland in a World Cup warm-up Test in 2011.

He could be joined in the squad that travels to Italy for Saturday's crunch match by Edinburgh team-mate Grayson Hart after the scrum-half was invited to Scotland training on Monday.

Chris Cusiter, Scotland's regular back-up number nine behind first-choice scrum-half Greig Laidlaw, missed Monday's training session after suffering a slight calf strain while playing for Glasgow in the Celtic League last weekend.

"Having completed the game for Glasgow Warriors at Cardiff at the weekend, Chris Cusiter subsequently reported to national camp today with a tight calf," said Scotland team doctor James Robson in a Scottish Rugby Union statement.

"Given the proximity of Saturday's international in Rome, Chris will undergo a precautionary scan at the SPIRE Murrayfield Hospital this (Monday) afternoon in order that we can have a more definitive assessment."

Both Italy and Scotland have lost their opening two matches in this season's Six Nations although the Azzurri have so far scored three tries to the Scots' none.

To make matters worse for Scotland, last time out they suffered the embarrassment of failing to score at all during a 20-0 Calcutta Cup defeat by arch-rivals England at Edinburgh's Murrayfield ground.

It was a loss that turned the spotlight on Scotland coach Scott Johnson, with many pundits and former players critical of the Australian's attempt to lessen the impact of defeat by labelling his players "naive" and saying he was picking a team for the future.

Johnson, who controversially dropped then Scotland captain Kelly Brown after the Ireland loss, is due to name his side to play Italy on Tuesday.

Read more on:    six nations  |  rugby
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