World Cup - Kellock returns for Scotland

Thu, 29 Sep 01:10:00 2011

Scotland coach Andy Robinson has recalled skipper Alastair Kellock and picked a side full of pace to play England in Saturday's must-win World Cup Pool B clash at Eden Park.

Alastair Kellock, Scotland, March 2010 - 0

Robinson made seven changes to his starting line-up from the team that dramatically lost to Argentina last Sunday for a match they must win by a margin to have a chance of reaching the quarter-finals.

"The way we've gone about this tournament is we've picked sides to win games of rugby," Robinson said.

"We can't go on the pitch and chase the game ... we need to get the scoreboard moving right at the start of the game and yet focus on the challenge in front of us."

Kellock returns at lock in place of Jim Hamilton, while Richie Vernon replaces Kelly Brown after the incumbent number eight suffered a head knock in the 13-12 defeat by Argentina.

"Safety is the key factor in sport that you must get right," said Robinson. "Kelly went on the bike yesterday and still had headaches so there was no way he was going to play."

Robinson has overhauled his backline with Joe Ansbro coming in at outside centre to form a partnership with Sean Lamont, who moves in from the wing to be replaced by Simon Danielli out wide.

preview Scotland - England

Mike Blair's attacking threat has won him starting berth at scrum-half with Chris Cusiter backing him up on the bench and Rory Lawson dropped from the matchday squad.

"We needed to put a bit more pace into the team but we also needed to get the balance right," said the coach.

"You can put pace into a team but you still need to establish a go forward. We've got to play through England, we're not going to beat them by just going around them."

Although form would dictate a victory for England, the oldest rivalry in international rugby has thrown up more than its fair share of upsets and this will be the first meeting in 140 years to be played at a neutral venue.

Former England international and coach Robinson said he would be encouraging his team to work up their anti-English passions before the match, even if it meant taking it out on him.

"You've got to use every emotion, because rugby union is an emotional game," he said.

"There's a lot of chaos in England-Scotland games and the thing is to be able to think clearly in that chaos, and one of the things we're looking to do on Saturday is play really quickly."

Scotland's best chance of progressing is to beat the 2003 world champions by at least eight points on Saturday and hope Argentina run in four tries in a victory over Georgia in the final Pool B match on Sunday.

"We're just going to focus on winning the test match," Robinson said. "We can't get overly worried about the scoreboard, just get in front."

Team: 15-Chris Paterson, 14-Max Evans, 13-Joe Ansbro, 12-Sean Lamont, 11-Simon Danielli, 10-Ruaridh Jackson, 9-Mike Blair, 8-Richie Vernon, 7-John Barclay, 6-Ally Strokosch, 5-Alastair Kellock (captain), 4-Richie Gray, 3-Euan Murray, 2-Ross Ford, 1-Allan Jacobsen.

Replacements: 16-Scott Lawson, 17-Alasdair Dickinson, 18-Nathan Hines, 19-Ross Rennie, 20-Chris Cusiter, 21-Dan Parks, 22-Nick de Luca.


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