Preview: Scotland v Wales

There was late drama the last time these two sides met at Scotstoun – so expect the same again on Sunday.

There was late drama the last time these two sides met at Scotstoun – so expect the same again on Sunday.

Lleucu George’s last-gasp conversion in this year’s Women’s Six Nations handed Wales a dramatic 17-15 win over the heartbroken Scots.

But a lot has changed since then, and the two sides arrive back in Glasgow with fresh outlooks.

Scotland have a new head coach in Philip Doyle and the former Ireland boss hit the ground running, guiding his side to back to back wins over South Africa this summer.

And while the Scots have been hit by the loss of centre Hannah Smith to injury, they have the experience of Lisa Martin to call upon while Rachel Malcolm is the new captain.

Martin will win her 50th cap this weekend if selected, and Doyle is excited about the challenge awaiting his side this autumn with back to back games against first Wales and then Japan.

Doyle said on the squad change: “It is disappointing that we won’t have Hannah for the match against Wales on Sunday. I am hopeful that we will have her back for the match next weekend against Japan.

“Lisa has a lot of experience and has been playing well at Saracens this season, starting every match. I am looking forward to seeing what she brings to the squad.”

Skipper Malcolm added: “It’s been a big few weeks for the girls since coming back from South Africa, with everyone returning to their respective clubs and also some important prep in the lead up to Autumn Tests.

“The squad left South Africa in a very strong place, both on and off the pitch, following a solid block of training, two strong wins and some great time together as a Squad.

“It was really important for us to keep pushing forward, especially with Autumn Tests on the horizon.”

Meanwhile Wales under Geraint Lewis have had a busy autumn already.

Replacement scrum-half Keira Bevan went over for a last minute try to clinch victory over Ireland last weekend – a welcome boost after their opening defeat to Spain.

Lewis has rung the changes for this weekend, with the goal of improving his side’s squad depth with autumn clashes against a Women’s Crawshay’s team coached by Rachel Taylor and Liza Burgess and a first Wales Women v Barbarians match still to come.

Ospreys duo Robyn Lock and Niamh Terry and Cardiff Blues winger Rebekah O’Loughlin have been handed their first starts against Scotland on Sunday.

Lock and Terry made their Wales debuts against Spain earlier this month while former tennis international O’Loughlin got her first cap in the last-minute win over Ireland last Sunday.

Uncapped front row forwards Molly Kelly and Sarah Lawrence are named on the bench while Siwan Lillicrap retains the captaincy.

Lewis added: “We’ve stuck with the theme of giving girls opportunities throughout this autumn, the three girls making their first start will be looking forward to that and we’ve also rewarded others for good performances against Ireland last week.

“We’re looking to build on that performance, keep working hard and get better at the basics. It’s always tough against Scotland especially at home.

“They will be passionate and hard-working but we can take confidence from last week and if we can replicate our effort and commitment, we will give ourselves a good chance to be in the game.”

Wales v Scotland (Sunday 17 November 3pm, Scotstoun, live on S4C)

Wales: Lauren Smyth (Ospreys); Rebekah O’Loughlin (Cardiff Blues), Megan Webb (Cardiff Blues), Kerin Lake (Ospreys), Lisa Neumann (RGC); Elinor Snowsill (Ospreys), Niamh Terry (Ospreys); Gwenllian Pyrs (RGC), Kelsey Jones (Ospreys), Cerys Hale (Cardiff Blues), Natalia John (Ospreys), Gwen Crabb (Ospreys), Robyn Lock (Ospreys), Bethan Lewis (Scarlets), Siwan Lillicrap (capt, Ospreys)

Replacements: Molly Kelly* (RGC), Gwenllian Jenkins (Scarlets), Sarah Lawrence* (Scarlets), Abbie Fleming (Cardiff Blues), Alex Callender (Scarlets), Ffion Lewis (Scarlets), Kayleigh Powell (Ospreys), Paige Randall (Cardiff Blues)

Scotland: TBC