Haining makes debut for much-changed Scotland against Ireland

Nick Haining will be part of an all-Edinburgh back-row in Dublin
Guinness Six Nations: Ireland v Scotland
Venue: Aviva Stadium, Dublin Date: Saturday, 1 February Kick-off: 16:45 GMT
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Radio 5 live extra & online; text commentary on BBC Sport website & app

Edinburgh number eight Nick Haining will make his Scotland debut against Ireland as Gregor Townsend’s side start their Six Nations campaign on Saturday.

The starting XV shows 10 changes from the one that faced Japan in Scotland’s final match of the Rugby World Cup.

Glasgow Warriors’ Adam Hastings replaces Finn Russell with the Racing 92 fly-half having been disciplined following a drinking session.

Prop Rory Sutherland makes his first start for three-and-a-half years.

Despite fellow Edinburgh forward Magnus Bradbury missing out with a thigh strain, the back-row is made up of team-mates from the Pro14 club, with Haining joining Hamish Watson and Jamie Ritchie as the Australia-born 29-year-old makes a late debut to international rugby.

Warriors lock Scott Cummings will make his Six Nations debut in Dublin and, as expected, Warriors outside centre Huw Jones makes his return to the side after improved recent form.

Edinburgh’s Blair Kinghorn replaces the injured Darcy Graham on the wing.

Exeter Chiefs full-back Stuart Hogg, Scotland’s new team captain, and Glasgow centre Sam Johnson are the only players retained in the back division, with Warriors scrum-half Ali Price and Saracens wing Sean Maitland starting in place of international retirees Greig Laidlaw and Tommy Seymour.

Worcester Warriors back row Cornell du Preez could make his first appearance from the bench since a larynx injury picked up playing for his club in September 2018.

Townsend said: “We have managed to cover a lot of work in the two weeks we’ve been together and we’ve been impressed with how our players have taken on information and bonded as a team.

“We must be a relentless collective on the pitch and a nightmare for the Irish to deal with while having the ability and awareness to impose our game at that intensity.”

Scotland team to face Ireland

Hogg, capt (Exeter Chiefs); Maitland (Saracens), Jones (Glasgow Warriors), Johnson (Glasgow Warriors), Kinghorn (Edinburgh); Hastings (Glasgow Warriors), Price (Glasgow Warriors); Sutherland (Edinburgh), Brown (Glasgow Warriors), Z Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors); Cummings (Glasgow Warriors), J Gray (Glasgow Warriors); J Ritchie (Edinburgh), Watson (Edinburgh), Haining (Edinburgh).

Replacements: McInally (Edinburgh), Dell (London Irish), Berghan (Edinburgh), Toolis (Edinburgh), Du Preez (Worcester Warriors), G Horne (Glasgow Warriors), Hutchinson (Northampton Saints), Harris (Gloucester).

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