Edinburgh winger to make international debut

Edinburgh winger to make international debut in Calcutta Cup clash

Scotland coach Andy Robinson is to hand uncapped Edinburgh winger Lee Jones a debut against England in the RBS Six Nations opener at Murrayfield on Saturday.

Robinson has made eight changes from the team which began Scotland’s most recent Test, the 16-12 Rugby World Cup loss to England in Auckland last October.

Jones is joined in being promoted to the starting line-up by lock Jim Hamilton, flanker Ross Rennie, number eight David Denton, scrum-half Chris Cusiter, fly-half Dan Parks, centre Nick De Luca and full-back Rory Lamont.

Jones and Edinburgh team-mate Denton are the only members of the starting XV who did not travel to the World Cup in New Zealand.

Robinson said of his decision to blood Jones in the Calcutta Cup showdown: “I’ve been pleased with the consistency Lee Jones has shown and he fully deserves to win his first cap.”

Hooker Ross Ford captains the side, with Allan Jacobsen at loosehead prop and Euan Murray at tighthead.

Kellock replaced

World Cup skipper Alastair Kellock has been replaced in the second row by Hamilton, who will partner Richie Gray.

Alasdair Strokosch is retained at blindside flanker, with Rennie taking the place of John Barclay at openside and Denton, who has one cap, succeeding Richie Vernon at number eight.

Cusiter and Parks replace Mike Blair and Ruaridh Jackson, who is out injured, at half-back, with a centre combination of Sean Lamont and De Luca, who replaces the injured Joe Ansbro.

Max Evans is to line up on the wing, with Jones on the other flank in place of Simon Danielli.

Rory Lamont takes the place of Chris Paterson, who retired last month following 109 caps.

The bench comprises hooker Scott Lawson, prop Geoff Cross, Kellock, Barclay, Blair, half-back Greig Laidlaw and centre Graeme Morrison.

Robinson is expecting another tight, tough encounter with the old enemy, adding: “It is not by accident that these games are referred to as Test matches – because that is what they are, the ultimate in physical and mental challenge and that is certainly always on the menu when England are our opponents.

“We have experienced players in our team and they must make that knowledge count by helping the team to a successful start on Saturday.”

Scotland have not been beaten by England at Murrayfield since 2004.

Scotland team: R Lamont (Glasgow Warriors); L Jones (Edinburgh), N De Luca (Edinburgh), S Lamont (Scarlets), M Evans (Castres); D Parks (Cardiff Blues), C Cusiter (Glasgow Warriors); A Jacobsen (Edinburgh), R Ford (capt, Edinburgh), E Murray (Newcastle), R Gray (Glasgow Warriors), J Hamilton (Gloucester), A Strokosch (Gloucester), R Rennie (Edinburgh), D Denton (Edinburgh)

Replacements: S Lawson (Gloucester), G Cross (Edinburgh), A Kellock (Glasgow Warriors), J Barclay (Glasgow Warriors), M Blair (Edinburgh), G Laidlaw (Edinburgh), G Morrison (Glasgow Warriors)