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Brothers in arms as Townsend rings the changes for Scotland's clash with USA

The teams meet in Houston on Saturday.

Glasgow's Matt Fagerson will make his debut.
Glasgow's Matt Fagerson will make his debut.
Image: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

SCOTLAND COACH GREGOR Townsend made 12 changes to his starting line-up for this weekend’s Test against the US Eagles in Houston, with fullback Stuart Hogg captaining a team which includes two sets of brothers.

Having demolished Canada in Edmonton last weekend in the opening game of their summer tour, Scotland have rung the changes for Saturday’s game at the BBVA Compass Stadium in Texas.

The two debutants are Glasgow Warriors duo Matt Fagerson, who comes in at number eight and scrum-half George Horne. Both players will make their first international appearances alongside elder brothers Zander and Pete.

Lock Ben Toolis, wing Blair Kinghorn and Sale Sharks wing Byron McGuigan are the only three players to retain their places from the side which defeated Canada last weekend.

“We always planned to play as much of the squad as possible on this tour, and we also deliberately picked more Edinburgh players in the first game because their season finished earlier,” Townsend said.

“Now we welcome most of the Glasgow Warriors contingent into the team. On top of that there are seven players making their first starts for the country, which is really exciting, and we are looking forward to them going out and grabbing this opportunity.

“The USA have won their last six games and scored a lot of points in the process. They’ve beaten two teams that have already qualified for the Rugby World Cup – Uruguay and Russia – and put 60 points on both of them.

“They are definitely improving as a team and are playing with a lot of confidence.”

The Fagerson and Horne brothers are the 48th and 49th set of siblings to play for Scotland, and the 22nd and 23rd pair of brothers to play in the same Test match.

It is only the eighth time in nearly 700 Scotland Tests that two sets of brothers have been on the field at the same time, joining the Evans and Lamont brothers (2010), Bulloch and Leslie brothers (2001), Milne and Hastings brothers (1990), and the Neilson and Orr brothers, who did so four times (1891-1892).

After Saturday’s Test in Houston, Scotland will wind up their summer tour against Argentina on 23 June.

Scotland:

15.Stuart Hogg (captain)
14. Blair Kinghorn
13. Nick Grigg
12. Pete Horne
11. Byron McGuigan
10. Adam Hastings
9. George Horne

8. Matt Fagerson
7. Luke Hamilton
6. Tim Swinson
5. Ben Toolis
4. Lewis Carmichael
3. Zander Fagerson
2. George Turner
1. Jamie Bhatti

Replacements:

16. Fraser Brown
17. Allan Dell
18. Murray McCallum
19. Grant Gilchrist
20. David Denton
21. Sam Hidalgo-Clyne
22. Mark Bennett
23. Dougie Fife.

© – AFP 2018 

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