After fielding six debutants in last weekend’s Test against Samoa, Scotland have named three more new caps in their team to play South Africa at Nelspruit on Saturday.
They are the Glasgow Warriors trio, full-back Peter Murchie, 27; wing Tommy Seymour, 24; and 26-year-old lock forward Tim Swinson.
They are among seven changes in the starting line-up from the 17-27 loss in Durban as head coach Scott Johnson adheres firmly to his policy of broadening the base of players within the international set-up, while at the same time dealing with a number of injuries.
The other changes see Ruaridh Jackson return at stand-off, his first start since Scotland’s RBS 6 Nations Championship victory over Ireland in February with Tom Heathcote rested after his concussion against Samoa; two injury-enforced switches, which see Scott Lawson at hooker for Pat MacArthur and Ryan Wilson, making his first start for Scotland, instead of Kelly Brown at openside; and a new boilerhouse combination with Swinson locking with Jim Hamilton.
Laidlaw follows in uncle’s footsteps as Scotland captain
Greig Laidlaw, who has skippered Edinburgh Rugby, takes over the leadership duties for the injured Brown, thus becoming Scotland’s 113th Test match captain.
A further three changes are made on the bench involving Jon Welsh, Alastair Kellock and David Denton.
Scott Johnson told www.scottishrugby.org: “I’m hard pressed to remember so many injuries from the one Test match but it’s a fact and we just have to get on with it. I’d said from before we left Scotland that we wanted to find out about players through this tour and, perhaps, because of circumstances, some of that is being accelerated.”
“But there’s no doubt for me that our three new caps, for example, have had strong seasons for Glasgow and have worked really diligently on the training fields out here to earn their chance.
“We’ve faced South Africa a fair bit in the last decade and right now they’re the second best team in the world, playing on their own paddock, and with a win against Italy already under their belts.”
“We have to be competitive and, once again, I’ll reiterate that we have to get our accuracy and aggression 100% at breakdown to give ourselves the opportunity.”
Scotland team (sponsor RBS) to play South Africa at the Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit on Saturday 15 June, kick-off 5.15pm (SA time, 4.15pm BST)
15 Peter Murchie (Glasgow Warriors) uncapped
14 Tommy Seymour (Glasgow Warriors) uncapped
13 Alex Dunbar (Glasgow Warriors) 1 cap
12 Matt Scott (Edinburgh Rugby) 13 caps, 1 try, 5 points
11 Sean Lamont (Glasgow Warriors) 77 caps, 10 tries, 50 points
10 Ruaridh Jackson (Glasgow Warriors) 20 caps, 3 conversions, 2 penalties, 2 drop-goals, 18 points
9 Greig Laidlaw (Edinburgh Rugby) CAPTAIN 19 caps, 2 tries, 16 conversions, 43 penalties, 171 points
1 Alasdair Dickinson (Edinburgh Rugby) 25 caps, 1 try, 5 points
2 Scott Lawson (Newcastle Falcons) 36 caps, 2 tries, 10 points
3 Euan Murray (Worcester Warriors) 54 caps, 2 tries, 10 points
4 Tim Swinson (Glasgow Warriors) uncapped
5 Jim Hamilton (Gloucester) 47 caps, 1 try, 5 points
6 Alasdair Strokosch (Perpignan) vice-captain 33 caps, 1 try, 5 points
7 Ryan Wilson (Glasgow Warriors) 3 caps
8 Johnnie Beattie (Montpellier) 22 caps, 3 tries, 15 points
Stevie Lawrie (Edinburgh Rugby) 1 cap Fraser Brown (Glasgow Warriors) uncapped
17 Jon Welsh (Glasgow Warriors) 1 cap
18 Moray Low (Glasgow Warriors) 19 caps
19 Alastair Kellock (Glasgow Warriors) 53 caps, 1 try, 5 points
20 David Denton (Edinburgh Rugby) 12 caps
21 Henry Pyrgos (Glasgow Warriors) 7 caps, 1 try, 5 points
22 Peter Horne (Glasgow Warriors) 1 cap
23 Duncan Taylor (Saracens) 1 cap
Referee: Romain Poite (France).
Assistant referees: Pascal Gauzere (France) and Neil Hennessy (Wales).
TMO: To be appointed by South African Rugby Union.