Gilchrist to lead Scotland against Romania
Grant Gilchrist will captain Scotland as they take on Romania in their penultimate Pool B fixture at Rugby World Cup 2023, as part of a starting line-up containing 13 changes to the one that defeated Tonga 45-17 last weekend.
In an entirely fresh pack, Gilchrist will link up in the second row with Sam Skinner, who was a replacement in that Tonga victory.
The back row sees the first appearances of the tournament for openside flanker Hamish Watson – named as a vice-captain – and blindside Luke Crosbie, with Matt Fagerson restored to the starting XV at number 8.
A freshened front row will bring about a Rugby World Cup debut for tighthead prop Javan Sebastian, who is joined by loosehead Jamie Bhatti and Ewan Ashman at hooker.
In the back division, Chris Harris, also a vice-captain, is partnered at centre by Cameron Redpath.
Ben Healy is named at stand-off for a first tournament showing, with the experienced Ali Price selected at scrum-half.
Kyle Steyn retains his place in the back three, switching wings to accommodate the return of Darcy Graham, with Ollie Smith operating at full-back.
Among the replacements, hooker Johnny Matthews is in line to make his Scotland debut having been called into the squad earlier in the week to replace the unfortunate Stuart McInally.
The remaining substitutes were all involved against Tonga, with Matthews’ front row colleagues Rory Sutherland and WP Nel, as well as Scott Cummings and Rory Darge, completing Scotland’s forward options from the bench.
George Horne and Blair Kinghorn, both try scorers last time out, are joined by Huw Jones in rounding off the matchday 23.
Scotland team to play Romania in the Rugby World Cup 2023 (Pool B) fixture at Stade Pierre-Mauroy, Lille, on Saturday 30 September 2023, kick-off 8pm (BST) – live on STV and ITV:
15. Ollie Smith (Glasgow Warriors) 7 caps
14. Darcy Graham (Edinburgh Rugby) 37 caps
13. Chris Harris (Gloucester Rugby) – Vice-captain – 45 caps
12. Cameron Redpath (Bath Rugby) 8 caps
11. Kyle Steyn (Glasgow Warriors) 14 caps
10. Ben Healy (Edinburgh Rugby) 3 caps
9. Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors) 64 caps
1. Jamie Bhatti (Glasgow Warriors) 33 caps
2. Ewan Ashman (Edinburgh Rugby) 10 caps
3. Javan Sebastian (Edinburgh Rugby) 6 caps
4. Sam Skinner (Edinburgh Rugby) 29 caps
5. Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh Rugby) – Captain – 66 caps
6. Luke Crosbie (Edinburgh Rugby) 5 caps
7. Hamish Watson (Edinburgh Rugby) – Vice-captain – 58 caps
8. Matt Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors) 38 caps
16. Johnny Matthews (Glasgow Warriors) uncapped
17. Rory Sutherland (unattached) 27 caps
18. WP Nel (Edinburgh Rugby) 59 caps
19. Scott Cummings (Glasgow Warriors) 31 caps
20. Rory Darge (Glasgow Warriors) 13 caps
21. George Horne (Glasgow Warriors) 24 caps
22. Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh Rugby) 48 caps
23. Huw Jones (Glasgow Warriors) 41 caps