Scotland’s former senior women’s national coach Graham Gunn, who has continued to steer the Scottish Universities team for several years, has named his final team for the British Universities Home Nations tournament in Nottingham next week, an event which has been hit by the failure of the Welsh women to raise a team.
Attempts to to fill the gap with an England B team have apparently foundered so, unlike the men, the Scottish women will only have two games.
Six of the 11 are from the Capital with Edinburgh University supplying Ali Mitchell, Sarah O’Brien and Fran Iwanycky. Queen Margaret have Jenny Simpson and Michelle Inglis while Napier’s Katie McBrierty returns to fitness. But the absence of McBrierty’s Edinburgh Kool Kats clubmate point guard and captain Emma Findlay (Glasgow Caley), who has a work placement, is a big blow to the team.
Holders England start huge favourites with Scotland and Northern Ireland, who open the tournament on Tuesday (3.30pm) likely to be fighting for the runners-up spot.
Scotland then have a rest day before playing England on Thursday (11am). Though England will also be favourites to retain the men’s title which they won in Ulster last year. Scotland, who open against the Irish on Tuesday (5.30pm) and play Wales on Wednesday (12.00), will hope their final game against the English on Thursday (1pm) will be a tournament decider.