Cotter makes four changes for quarter

2015-10-16 14:11
Vern Cotter (Gallo)

Guildford - Vern Cotter made four changes, two of them enforced, to the Scotland starting XV for Sunday's Rugby World Cup quarter-final with Australia from the one that edged Samoa 36-33 last Saturday.

Hooker Fraser Brown and lock Tim Swinson come in for the suspended Ross Ford and Jonny Gray respectively - even though the Scots have appealed against the three week bans imposed on the duo.

Cotter also brought in Blair Cowan in the backrow replacing Ryan Wilson, who was sin-binned during the Samoa game, and centre Peter Horne comes in for Matthew Scott.

Cowan, who was called up as a replacement during the tournament, will fill a back row of non-Scotland born players with Zimbabwe-born David Denton and another Kiwi in John Hardie.

The side will be captained by the outstanding kicking scrum-half Greig Laidlaw, who kicked all the points when the Scots pulled off a rare win in Australia in 2012 beating the Wallabies in appalling weather conditions 12-6.

Laidlaw, who finished the pool stage as the leading points scorer with 60, captains the side for the 21st time, four behind record-holder David Sole and only needs one penalty on Sunday to reach the landmark of 100 in Test rugby.

America-born wing Tommy Seymour could equal the record of a Scot scoring in successive Test matches on Sunday as he has touched down in his past four with former flyhalf Gregor Townsend holding the record of five in 1999.

Scotland have only once ever reached the semi-finals of the quadrennial global showpiece, in 1991 when they lost to hosts England.


Scotland: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Sean Maitland, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Peter Horne, 11 Tommy Seymour, 10 Finn Russell, 9 Greig Laidlaw (captain), 8 David Denton, 7 John Hardie, 6 Blair Cowan, 5 Richie Gray, 4 Tim Swinson, 3 WP Nel, 2 Fraser Brown, 1 Alasdair Dickinson

Substitutes: 16 Kevin Bryce, 17 Gordon Reid, 18 Jon Welsh, 19 Alasdair Strokosch, 20 Josh Strauss, 21 Henry Pyrgos, 22 Richie Vernon, 23 Sean Lamont

Australia: TBA

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