RUGBY : Alex Grove will make his Scotland debut and Chris Cusiter will captain his country for the first time in Saturday’s opening autumn international against Fiji.
Alex Grove will make his Scotland debut and Chris Cusiter will captain his country for the first time in Saturday’s opening autumn international against Fiji.
Worcester centre Grove, who turns 22 this month, will partner Graeme Morrision in midfield, while Cusiter has won his battle with joint skipper Mike Blair for the scrum-half berth.
Tighthead prop Moray Low, 24, will make his full debut but there is no place in the XV for record points scorer and appearance holder Chris Paterson, who is on the bench.
In all, there are 10 changes in personnel from the team beaten by England in the last Test at Twickenham in March for what will be Andy Robinson’s first game as head coach.
Robinson told Scotland’s official website: “We have selected a side that’s full of power; that has the pace but also has the skill level to break down the Fijians.
“Fiji are above us in the IRB rankings. They are a very dangerous team to play against.
“They are a very strong, powerful side who also hit very hard (in the tackle). We have to match fire with fire.”
Indeed, Robinson appears to have gone for power both in the forwards and backs – emphasised by the selection of Rory and Sean Lamont and Simon Danielli in the back three.