10 Borderers in Scotland's last Five Nations-winning squads
Three Borderers have been named in Scotland’s squad for rugby’s 2021 Six Nations championship, plus another two players with links to the region, and all five will be hoping to match up to the exploits of their most notable forebears from this neck of the woods.
It’s been many a long year, though, since any of the Borderers to feature in the ranks of the national team were able to return here as winners – so long, in fact, that it was the Five Nations then, Italy having yet to join in at that point – but the region was well represented in the two squads that last outdid England, Wales, Ireland and France to take the title in 1999 and 1990.
Captain Stuart Hogg, named as player of the tournament in 2016 and 2017, the first Scot to pick up that accolade and only the second man ever to do so twice in a row, and fellow ex-Hawick players Darcy Graham and Rory Sutherland, along with Gary Graham and Cameron Redpath, know they will have their work cut out to end the 22 years of hurt the nation’s rugby fans have had to endure since they last got to party like it was 1999, but come Saturday, February 6, and their opening match away to England, they’ll certainly be out to give it their best shot.
Jim Telfer’s Scots were level on points with runners-up England in 1999, both having six, but claimed the title by virtue of their superior points tally of plus-41, having scored twice as many tries as their neighbours, 16 to England’s eight.
That time round, they beat Wales 33-20, Ireland 30-13 and France 36-22 but lost 24-21 to England.
In 1990, managed by Ian McGeechan, they were two points clear of runners-up England, with eight, having beaten them 13-7, Wales 13-9, France 21-0 and Ireland 13-10.
Here, in no particular order of merit, are 10 Borderers from those two championship-winning squads ...