A strong Borders flavour, particularly from Melrose, runs through the Scotland Club XV squad which has been announced ahead of two fixtures against Ireland in 2019 as the players bid to retain the Dalriada Cup.
Experienced Melrose head coach Rob Chrystie is also at the helm as the team – which features two players from Hawick and seven from the Greenyards – begins preparations for its first game against Ireland at Myreside in early February. Selection for the Club XV is drawn from players who play for Tennent’s Premiership clubs across the country, bringing together the best players from Scotland’s domestic game.
Chrystie said: “It’s exciting to take it on after being the forwards coach last year.
“It’s an exciting stepping stone for those selected and we have a good blend and balance of youth and experience, with those who have been selected to receive the highest honours available in the club game.”
“Selection has been all about those playing well in the Premiership and it’s great that these guys will get the opportunity to show what they are all about.”
The home leg of the Dalriada Cup will be at Myreside on February 1 before the team travels to Energia Park on February 8 for the return fixture.
The Scotland Club XV squad 2018-19 includes:
Forwards – Shawn Muir (Hawick), Russell Anderson, Ian Moody, Grant Runciman and Neil Irvine-Hess (all Melrose).
Backs – Lee Armstrong (Hawick), Murdo McAndrew, Craig Jackson and Fraser Thomson (all Melrose).