Brown set for milestone as Scotland make three changes

Fraser Brown will bring up a half-century of appearances for Scotland when they welcome Guinness Six Nations leaders France to BT Murrayfield on Sunday.

Fraser Brown will bring up a half-century of appearances for Scotland when they welcome Guinness Six Nations leaders France to BT Murrayfield on Sunday.

The 30-year-old is one of three changes made by Gregor Townsend to the starting XV that triumphed over Italy in Rome, becoming the 43rd Scot to reach the milestone.

Edinburgh duo Grant Gilchrist and Nick Haining also come into the second row and at No.8 respectively in the other two changes made for the visit of Les Bleus, who are unbeaten after three games.

Sam Skinner has recovered from injury to take his place on the bench for the first time in this campaign, where he is joined by Magnus Bradbury and Stuart McInally.

Duncan Weir is also poised to make his first Scotland appearance since the 2017 Championship, with the 27-times capped Worcester Warriors player named on the bench as well.

The remainder of the pack is unchanged as Zander Fagerson, Rory Sutherland, Scott Cummings, Jamie Ritchie and Hamish Watson start their fourth consecutive Test.

Elsewhere, an unchanged back division sees Chris Harris and Sam Johnson reunited in midfield as Adam Hastings and Ali Price also resume their half-back partnership.

Captain and full-back Stuart Hogg is joined in the back-three by Blair Kinghorn and Sean Maitland as Scotland bid for back-to-back Championship wins after the victory over the Azzurri.

Head coach Gregor Townsend said: “This week we face a France team that looks galvanised since the World Cup, with a potential Grand Slam in their sights following impressive wins over England, Italy and Wales.

“We have a lot of respect for their coaching team and the quality of player they possess throughout their squad, many of them just in their early stages of their international careers. We’re going to have to deliver our best rugby of the championship in order to beat a team in such good form.

“Coming back to BT Murrayfield is always a very special feeling and the energy generated from the Scotland supporters means a great deal to everyone associated with the squad.

“Our players are looking forward to revelling in that atmosphere on Sunday.”

Scotland team to play France at BT Murrayfield Stadium:

15. Stuart Hogg CAPTAIN (Exeter Chiefs) – 75 caps 14. Sean Maitland (Saracens) – 47 caps 13. Chris Harris (Gloucester) – 17 caps 12. Sam Johnson (Glasgow Warriors) – 12 caps 11. Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh) – 20 caps 10. Adam Hastings (Glasgow Warriors) – 19 caps 9. Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors) – 31 caps 1. Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh) – 6 caps 2. Fraser Brown VICE CAPTAIN (Glasgow Warriors) – 49 caps 3. Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors) – 28 caps 4. Scott Cummings (Glasgow Warriors) – 11 caps 5. Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh) – 41 caps 6. Jamie Ritchie (Edinburgh) – 17 caps 7. Hamish Watson (Edinburgh) – 31 caps 8. Nick Haining (Edinburgh) – 2 caps


16. Stuart McInally (Edinburgh) – 36 caps 17. Allan Dell (London Irish) – 31 caps 18. Willem Nel (Edinburgh) – 37 caps 19. Sam Skinner (Exeter Chiefs) – 6 caps 20. Magnus Bradbury (Edinburgh) – 13 caps 21. George Horne (Glasgow Warriors) – 12 caps 22. Duncan Weir (Worcester Warriors) – 27 caps 23. Kyle Steyn (Glasgow Warriors) – uncapped