Scotland’s medics have done a miracle job allowing Vern Cotter to make just one change – and that tactical – to his starting team for the final RBS 6 Nations match against Italy at BT Murrayfield on Saturday.
The Kiwi head coach’s final selection in the job sees Ross Ford returning for his 107th cap at hooker in place of Fraser Brown, but the catalogue of ailing players from the rout at Twickenham have all recovered to take their place in the team.
Stuart Hogg, Tommy Seymour and Ryan Wilson have all passed concussion protocols while injuries to Finn Russell, Richie Gray and Huw Jones which required scans have proved not to be serious enough for any of them to miss out.
Brown, who missed two days of training to attend a disciplinary panel after his yellow card at Twickenham, drops to the bench where Matt Scott makes his first appearance of the campaign as a replacement for the absent Mark Bennett.
If Scotland beat Italy Cotter will be their only head coach in the professional era to finish with a positive record – he currently has 18 wins in his 35 tests in charge. If results go Scotland’s way and they win with a bonus point they will finish second in the Six Nations for the first time.
The Scots have not won their final match of the 6 Nations season since 2011, the last time they played the Italians at Murrayfield on the final weekend.
Team: S Hogg; T Seymour, H Jones, A Dunbar, T Visser; F Russell, A Price; G Reid, R Ford, Z Fagerson; J Gray, R Gray; J Barclay (capt), H Watson, R Wilson.
Replacements: F Brown, A Dell, S Berghan, T Swinson, C du Preez, H Pyrgos, D Weir, M Scott.