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6 Nations

Scotland make changes for Italy clash

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Photo by Visionhaus/Getty Images

Glasgow Warriors’ scrum-half Ali Price is in line to make his 50th appearance for Scotland having been named in the starting XV to face Italy in the penultimate round of fixtures for the 2022 Guinness Six Nations.

28-year-old Ali Price made his international debut in 2016 against Georgia at Rugby Park and has since gone on to combine with Finn Russell to create an established partnership at 9 and 10. The two will start for the seventh successive occasion on Saturday.

In one of five changes made to the team that were defeated against France, Sam Johnson returns to the line-up following his start in the victory over England in round one of this year’s championship and will partner Gloucester Rugby’s Chris Harris in the centre.

Kyle Steyn makes his first start in the Guinness Six Nations having come off the bench against France in 2020. The Glasgow Warriors winger marked his first Scotland start in style last year, scoring four tries in the Autumn Nations Series against Tonga. Edinburgh Rugby’s Darcy Graham will occupy the opposite wing following three impressive performances so far in the championship, with Exeter Chiefs full-back Stuart Hogg once again captaining the side.

In the forwards, Glasgow Warriors’ Matt Fagerson returns from injury to start at number 8. Fellow Edinburgh back-rower Hamish Watson is also named in the starting line-up having missed out against France through Covid. Fresh from signing a long-term contract with Glasgow Warriors, Rory Darge retains his place.

Edinburgh Rugby’s Grant Gilchrist and Exeter Chiefs’ Sam Skinner are unchanged in the second-row from the France match.

In the front-row George Turner is brought into the starting line-up. Glasgow Warriors’ prop Zander Fagerson keeps his place in the first XV along with Edinburgh Rugby’s Pierre Schoeman.

In the replacements Ben Vellacott is in line to make his debut. The scrum-half has been capped for Scotland Under-20s and joined Edinburgh Rugby this season following two years at Gloucester Rugby.

Adam Hastings could make his first appearance of the 2022 Guinness Six Nations from the bench and will take his place alongside Sione Tuipulotu who is also named as a replacement.

Stuart McInally, WP Nel and Allan Dell are options in the front row as replacements while Edinburgh Rugby duo Magnus Bradbury and Jamie Hodgson are available to come off the bench in the back five.

Sign up here to the Scottish Rugby newsletter to get all the latest news from the Scotland camp direct to your inbox during the 2022 Guinness Six Nations.

Scotland team to face Italy in the 2022 Guinness Six Nations at Stadio Olimpico, Rome, live on ITV, Saturday, 12 March – kick-off 2.15pm GMT.

15. Stuart Hogg – Exeter Chiefs – (Captain) – 91 caps
14. Darcy Graham – Edinburgh Rugby – 25 caps
13. Chris Harris – Gloucester Rugby – 34 caps
12. Sam Johnson – Glasgow Warriors – 22 caps
11. Kyle Steyn – Glasgow Warriors – 3 caps
10. Finn Russell – Racing 92 – (Vice-Captain) – 61 caps
9. Ali Price – Glasgow Warriors – 49 caps


1. Pierre Schoeman – Edinburgh Rugby -7 caps
2. George Turner – Glasgow Warriors – 23 caps
3. Zander Fagerson – Glasgow Warriors – 45 caps
4. Sam Skinner – Exeter Chiefs – 18 caps
5. Grant Gilchrist – Edinburgh Rugby – (Vice-Captain) – 51 caps
6. Rory Darge – Glasgow Warriors – 2 caps
7. Hamish Watson – Edinburgh Rugby – 47 caps
8. Matt Fagerson – Glasgow Warriors – 19 caps

Replacements

16. Stuart McInally – Edinburgh Rugby – 46 caps
17. Allan Dell – London Irish – 32 caps
18. WP Nel – Edinburgh Rugby – 46 caps
19. Jamie Hodgson – Edinburgh Rugby – 4 caps
20. Magnus Bradbury – Edinburgh Rugby – 17 caps
21. Ben Vellacott – Edinburgh Rugby – uncapped
22. Adam Hastings – Gloucester Rugby – 25 caps
23. Sione Tuipulotu – Glasgow Warriors – 4 caps


6 Nations

Ireland’s TikTok Women’s Six Nations Home Games To Be Played At Musgrave Park

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Ireland’s home matches in the 2023 TikTok Women’s Six Nations will be played at Musgrave Park.

The Cork venue has been the home of the Ireland U20s since 2019 and has become a real fortress in recent seasons, with Ireland Women also enjoying huge support there when they defeated Italy at Musgrave Park in last year’s Six Nations.

Greg McWilliams‘ side open their 2023 Championship against Wales in Cardiff on Saturday, 25th March (2.15pm) before welcoming France to Cork in Round 2 on Saturday, 1st April (3.15pm). After a rest weekend, Ireland will be on the road again, going head-to-head with Italy in Parma on Saturday, 15th April (4.45pm).

World Cup finalists England will visit Musgrave Park in Round 4 on Saturday, 22nd April (2.15pm) and the Championship will conclude with a trip to Edinburgh to take on Scotland at the DAM Health Stadium on Saturday, 29th April (7.30pm).

“We received huge home support during last year’s Six Nations and we’re excited to make Cork our home base for the 2023 Championship,” McWilliams said. “We enjoyed a good day out against Italy last year, with the people of Cork coming out to support the team and we will be hoping for more of the same in 2023, as two of the best teams in women’s rugby come to visit.”

Ticket details for Ireland’s home matches at Musgrave Park will be announced in due course.

TikTok Women’s Six Nations Fixtures 2023:

  • Wales v Ireland, Saturday 25 March, Cardiff Arms Park, 2.15pm
  • Ireland v France, Saturday 1 April, Musgrave Park, 3.15pm
  • Italy v Ireland, Saturday 15 April, Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi, 4.45pm
  • Ireland v England, Saturday 22 April, Musgrave Park, 2.15pm
  • Scotland v Ireland, Saturday 29 April, DAM Health Stadium, 7.30pm.

Images & Content from Irish Rugby & Images © Inpho Photography


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6 Nations

Leading Rugby Stakeholders Unite To Consider Future Of Rugby

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Rugby’s major stakeholders have united to consider the short and long-term insights and priorities for ensuring the sport is a relevant, accessible and attractive sport for all as it grows over the next decade.

The World Rugby Shape of the Game conference, hosted in London, gathered leading coaching, playing, officiating, medical and event owner minds to consider how to build a better game for all, focusing on safety and spectacle. Underpinning that mission is the ongoing prioritisation of player welfare, while fostering an environment that is simpler, more accessible and more attractive.

It will be followed by similar conferences on the elite women’s 15s and community games as the sport looks to growth opportunities over the next decade. The process will also consider fan views and general sport and entertainment considerations to create a holistic approach to the future of the sport.

Over two days, delegates considered the global welfare landscape, including reinforcing the data regarding the relative safety of the community and age-grade game, global playing trends and the role of match officials, the narrative around the sport with all participants focused on the bigger picture.

The conference identified key areas for further exploration:

• Focus on the fan: Insights from fans and broadcasters to inform the longer-term development of the sport as an entertainment product

• Speed up the game: Focus on interventions and innovations to reduce stoppages, increase continuity and the rhythm of the game

• Support match officials: Provide them with the tools to perform their role to their best ability, consider TMO intervention reductions

• Underpin with player welfare: Continue to implement evidence-based strategies to mitigate head injuries and overall injuries in the sport

• Change the narrative: The community game is the lifeblood of the sport, the risk of injury is much less than that of the elite game, focus on the benefits while managing the risks

World Rugby will take away the considerations and insights for further exploration to prioritise areas that can be implemented in the short term without changing law ahead of Rugby World Cup 2023.

World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said:

“As a sport, a movement and a family, we must always challenge ourselves to be better. That means taking time to consider what fans and players want the future of our sport to be, a future where more people want to play and support the game, where injury risk is reducing and where all involved in the game have their say.

“This conference was the first step towards a reimagination of our sport. The full and frank contributions from a wide spectrum of disciplines gives us plenty to consider and to move forward with through our structures. I would like to thank all participants for taking time out at a busy time to unite, collaborate and consider our future.”

Images & Content from Irish Rugby & Images © Inpho Photography


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6 Nations

England side to face Springboks

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England host the Springboks at Twickenham Stadium in their final Autumn Nations Series game on Saturday 26 November (5.30pm KO).

Manu Tuilagi will make his 50th appearance for England at outside centre, having made his debut for England against Wales in August 2011. Owen Farrell will again captain the side at inside centre.

Marcus Smith is at fly half and Jack van Poortvliet is at scrum half. Tommy Freeman comes in at right wing, Jonny May is at left wing and Freddie Steward is full back.

Jamie George (hooker) and Mako Vunipola join fellow prop Kyle Sinckler in two changes to the starting front row. Maro Itoje and Jonny Hill stay at lock. Alex Coles comes in at flanker with Tom Curry, while Billy Vunipola is No.8.

Last weekend’s double-try scorer Will Stuart is named as a finisher along with Luke Cowan-Dickie, David Ribbans, Sam Simmonds, Ben Youngs, Henry Slade and vice-captains Ellis Genge and Jack Nowell.

“This is our last game of the autumn and our chance to continue building on the improvements we have made throughout the matches,” said Jones. “We have made steady progress from game-to-game, culminating in a pulsating draw against New Zealand.

“Now we have the chance to test ourselves against the might of the world champions. We’re going out there to light the crowd up. The support at Twickenham was outstanding last week and we want to work hard on the pitch to make sure we have another atmosphere like that again on Saturday.”

Squad

Starters

15. Freddie Steward

14. Tommy Freeman

13. Manu Tuilagi

12. Owen Farrell (C)

11. Jonny May

10. Marcus Smith

9. Jack van Poortvliet

1. Mako Vunipola

2. Jamie George

3. Kyle Sinckler

4. Maro Itoje

5. Jonny Hill

6. Alex Coles

7. Tom Curry

8. Billy Vunipola

Finishers

16. Luke Cowan-Dickie

17. Ellis Genge

18. Will Stuart

19. David Ribbans

20. Sam Simmonds

21. Ben Youngs

22. Henry Slade

23. Jack Nowell


Images & Content from England Rugby
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