Five changes as MacRae announces fresh squad for North America

Calum MacRae has made five changes to his squad as Scotland 7s look to continue their encouraging start to the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in Las Vegas this weekend.

Edinburgh Rugby’s Sean Kennedy and Tom Brown are included for the first time this series after impressive performances in the Guinness PRO12 while Hugh Blake also travels with the team for the first time this year. 

London Scottish’s Ally Miller is in line to make his Scotland 7s debut, the former Scotland U20s man included in a World Series squad for the first time.

Elsewhere Dougie Fife and captain Scott Riddell have overcome injuries to be included having missed out in Sydney while Joe Nayacavou returns having spent time with the Army team.

Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that James Johnstone (shoulder), Gavin Lowe (shoulder) and Nick McLennan (knee) have all successfully undergone surgery and are likely to miss the rest of the series.

Scotland have been drawn in Pool D alongside Australia, Fiji and Japan.

Scotland 7s head coach Calum MacRae said: “Having reviewed our performances in Wellington and Sydney, it was apparent that in certain areas of our game, we didn't deliver accurately enough. 

“This week is an opportunity for us to get back to the high standards set so far this year and play to our strengths as a team. 

“Even with the challenges to the squad, Sean (Kennedy) and Tom (Brown) are experienced players coming in who will add our team and have been in the Sevens environment before.

“Hugh (Blake) was one of the teams most influencial and consistent performers last series and its great to welcome him back into the group for the rest of the series.

“Ally Miller is a bright prospect and like others before him, will use the Sevens programme as a pathway to accelerate his development for his back row position in fifteens. He is another exciting talent who will gain a huge amount from the challenging World Series competition. 

“We will have to be at our best to progress from this pool and are looking forward what lies ahead."

Scotland 7s captain Scott Riddell said: “From our review of Sydney, we have worked on a couple of specific areas and made strides forward in each of these.

“Collectively, we were disappointed with the overall performance in Sydney and Vegas is a massive opportunity for us to move forward.

“Our initial goal for any tournament we play in is to get into the Cup Quarter Finals and Vegas is no different, to do this we need to improve on our individual and collective performance from Sydney.”

 

Scotland 7s fixtures in the fifth leg of the World Rugby HSBC Sevens Series in Las Vegas, Saturday 4 March & Sunday 5 March (Kick-off times in GMT)

 

4 March

00.31am - Scotland 7s v Australia 7s

3.08am - Scotland 7s vs Fiji 7s

9.28pm - Scotland 7s vs Japan 7s

 

5 March 

Fixtures TBC

 

Scotland 7s squad to compete in Las Vegas (World Series tournaments in brackets)

 

1. Scott Riddell (53) – Captain

2. Dougie Fife (10)

3. Ally Miller (0)

4. Gregor Hunter (1)

5. Tom Brown (2)

6. Mark Robertson (51)

7. Jamie Farndale (15)

8. Joseva Nayacavou (21)

9. Sean Kennedy (6)

10. Scott Wight (24)

11. James Fleming (37)

12. Fraser Lyle (11)

13. Hugh Blake (10)