Ex-Southern Knights and Melrose back row Rory Darge to make debut start for Scotland

Ex-Melrose and Southern Knights rugby number eight Rory Darge is set to make his first start for Scotland on Saturday as they take on France in the third match of this year’s Guinness Six Nations Championship at BT Murrayfield.

By Ralph Mellon
Thursday, 24th February 2022, 2:01 pm
Rory Darge (picture by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Rory Darge (picture by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

The current Glasgow Warriors flanker made his international debut at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff earlier this month and is named alongside Hamish Watson and Magnus Bradbury in a new-look starting back row.

The native Hawick pairing of Darcy Graham (Edinburgh), occupying the right-wing position after his try-scoring appearance in Wales, and full back Stuart Hogg (Exeter Chiefs), leading the team out 10 years on from his first start for Scotland, against France in 2012, completes the Borders representation in the squad this time round.In a recent interview, Darge, 22, said he believed tournament favourites France could be stopped, provided Scotland got the minor details right.

Following the Scots’ narrow win over England and similarly slender defeat by Wales – the score in both games was 20-17 – the French are the only team who can still take the Grand Slam, having won their opening two matches.“It was massively disappointing that we lost to Wales,” said Darge, who made his long-awaited debut off the bench in Cardiff. “But we’ve still got three huge games left.“If you try and put it in perspective, we’ve won a really big game against England, then lost another game by a really small margin where we were disappointed with the performance and the result.“At this level, it’s about small moments and what impact that can have – the margins that it comes down to. We know what France will bring. Every moment is going to be massively important against them.”

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The match is live on BBC One, kicking off at 2.15pm, and the Scottish line-up is:

15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Darcy Graham, 13 Chris Harris, 12 Sione Tuipulotu, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Finn Russell, 9 Ali Price.

1 Pierre Schoeman, 2 Stuart McInally, 3 Zander Fagerson, 4 Sam Skinner, 5 Grant Gilchrist, 6 Rory Darge, 7 Hamish Watson, 8 Magnus Bradbury.Replacements – 16 George Turner, 17 Oli Kebble, 18 WP Nel, 19 Jamie Hodgson, 20 Nick Haining, 21 Ben White, 22 Blair Kinghorn, 23 Mark Bennett.