Murray makes seven changes to U20 side to face Italy

Murray makes seven changes to U20 side to face Italy

​Scotland U20 Head Coach Kenny Murray has named his side to face Italy in the second round of the Under-20 Summer Series game in Italy tomorrow (kick off 7pm BST).

Murray has made seven changes to his starting line-up who were defeated by Wales in the opening round.

Gabe Jones (Brunel University/Ealing Trailfinders) earns his first start for the national age-grade side at full-back after impressing from the bench last time out.

He will be joined in the back line by Ayrshire Bulls Andy Stirrat and Boroughmuir Bears Duncan Munn in the centres with Gala’s Kerr Johnston retaining his position on the wing from the first game. Ross McKnight (Stirling County) will start on Johnston’s opposite wing for his first start of this competition.

Scrum-half Ben Afshar (Southern Knights) and stand-off Euan Cunningham (Stirling County) earn their first start together a half-back paring having come off the bench in the last match.

Boroughmuir Bears flanker Rhys Tait will skipper the team from the openside flank, he will be joined by the same back-row that started against Wales with club team-mate Liam McConnell on the blindside flank and Exeter Chief’s Ollie Leatherbarrow at number 8.

The second row of Josh Taylor (Ealing Trailfinders) and Max Williamson (Glasgow Warriors) also remains unchanged.

There’s a new front row for this match as double try scorer from the last match, Patrick Harrison, is selected as starting the hooker with Iain Carmichael (Boroughmuir Bears) and Gregor Scougall (Watsonians) the starting props.

There are 26 players in the matchday squad because of the condensed nature of the tournament. All 11 substitutes are available to be used during the match.

Scotland U20 Head Coach Kenny Murray said: “Whilst the result and performance against Wales was deeply disappointing, there were some positives to take from the second half and from the performances of some of the youngest members of our squad.

“Selection for this game against Italy has reflected that, with Afshar and Cunningham we thought they finished the game strongly last time out so we give them a chance to show what they can do from the off in this game.

“Whilst we’ve made a change to the front row, we’ve stuck with the same starting back five in the scrum to provide some much needed experience against what we know will be a physical Italian outfit.”

Watch the game live here

Scotland U20 team to play Italy in the Under-20 Summer Series, Stadio Di Monigo, Italy. Kick-off 7.00pm BST

15. Gabe Jones (Brunel University/Ealing Trailfinders)

14. Ross McKnight (Stirling County/Glasgow Warriors)
13. Duncan Munn (Boroughmuir Bears)
12. Andy Stirrat (Ayrshire Bulls)
11. Kerr Johnston (Gala RFC)

10. Euan Cunningham (Stirling County/Glasgow Warriors)
9. Ben Afshar (Southern Knights)

1. Iain Carmichael (Boroughmuir Bears)
2. Patrick Harrison (Watsonians RFC/Edinburgh Rugby)
3. Gregor Scougall (Watsonians RFC)
4. Josh Taylor (Ealing Trailfinders)
5. Max Williamson (Glasgow Warriors)
6. Liam McConnell (Boroughmuir Bears)
8. Ollie Leatherbarrow (Exeter Chiefs)
7. Rhys Tait CAPTAIN (Boroughmuir Bears/Glasgow Warriors)

16. Duncan Hood (Bath University)
17. James Lascelles (Gloucester Rugby/Hartpury College)
18. Ali Rogers (Ayrshire Bulls)
19. Jake Spurway (Stirling County/Durham University)
20. Rudi Brown (Southern Knights/Edinburgh Rugby)
21. Finlay Burgess (Stirling County)
22. Christian Townsend (Ayrshire Bulls/Glasgow Warriors)
23. Keiran Clark (Southern Knights)
24. Matthew Deehan (Newcastle Falcons)
25. Gregor Hiddleston (Stirling County)
26. Ben Salmon (Stirling County)

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