Scotland got an almighty scare and were given a physical lesson by Samoa in the opening Autumn Test, barely holding on for a win in the highest-scoring international ever played at BT Murrayfield.
It’s maybe not quite reached the official passing of the torch yet, but there’s still an element of a changing of the guard as Scotland take on Samoa in the opening Autumn Test of 2017 at BT Murrayfield today.
Gregor Townsend has packed his pack with Edinburgh players and his backline with Glasgow Warriors for Scotland’s Autumn opener against Samoa – but quoted some fairly authoritative precedents for his decisions.
"How many tightheads do you want?" I once asked Vern Cotter. "As many as you've got," he replied.
Darryl Marfo, up until last year a career fringe player in the English Premiership, will win his first cap for Scotland against Samoa in Gregor Townsend’s first home game as head coach.
Stuart McInally has taken his time to be a frontline starter since he moved from backrow, but Richard Cockerill’s endorsement seems to have him squarely in the Hookers’ Guild.
Samoa have given Scotland plenty scares in the past and don’t expect anything different on Saturday, warns wing Tommy Seymour.
Scotland captain John Barclay says his case is exactly the reason why rugby’s system with dealing for concussion is “flawed”.
When he struggled to button his usher’s jacket, measured six months before for Duncan Weir’s wedding in July, Stuart Hogg decided he had to get leaner and more explosive.
Even Richard Cockerill was moved to a proper smile – not his usual sardonic one – as Edinburgh started to look much more like his vision of them at Myreside on Saturday.