Scotland suffered a major blow ahead of their summer tour to Australia, Singapore and Fiji with the withdrawl of lock Richie Gray.
Back up scrum-half Sam Hidalgo-Clyne has also withdrawn from the tour party with Edinburgh team-mate Sean Kennedy called in as a replacement. There is to be no direct replacement for the 64-times capped former British Lion second row.
Gray did report to Oriam for the training camp last week but was suffering from an ongoing back complaint and the after-effects of a short illness.
“Following a review from the Scotland medical team it was deemed best for the player to return to his club for rest, recovery and rehabilitation over the summer period,” read a statement from the national team spokesman.
Hidalgo-Clyne, only called into the squad as a replavce,ent himself when captain Greig Laidlaw was called up to the British & Irish Lions, sustained a hamstring tear during training at Oriam on Friday
A scan at Spire Murrayfield Hospital confirmed the extent of the injury and, consequently, his absence from the tour and the inclusion of Kennedy.
Gray missed the final match of the 6 Nations against Italy with the back problem and head coach Gregor Townsend said the problem has limited his involvement since then.
“Richie has been unable to do much training since the RBS 6 Nations because of his back issues so it became quickly evident he wouldn’t be able to play test match rugby this summer,” said Townsend.
“It was valuable having him in camp last week, spending time with the new coaching group, and we wish him well with his recovery and getting back to full fitness for next season.
“We’re all disappointed for Sam who came into camp full of enthusiasm and worked really hard in our first three days together.
“While it’s a blow for him to miss the tour, at least his injury isn’t too serious and he can get back into pre-season with Edinburgh at a later date.
“It’s great that we have been able to call up a quality replacement in Sean Kennedy and we look forward to working with him over the next couple of weeks.
“His passing ability and conditioning level will fit in very well with the rugby we aspire to play.”
Scotland play Italy in Singapore on June 10, Australia in Sydney on June 17 and Fiji in Suva on June 24.