Four changes for Scotland in Six Nations opener

Stuart Hogg will line up at full back for Scotland. Pic: JANE BARLOW

Stuart Hogg will line up at full back for Scotland. Pic: JANE BARLOW

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Scotland have made four changes plus a positional switch in their starting XV to face Ireland in their RBS Six Nations opener in Dublin on Sunday.

British Lion Stuart Hogg returns at full-back having missed the viagogo Autumn Tests through injury, while other changes from the team that took on Australia see Glasgow’s Alex Dunbar preferred to Nick De Luca of Edinburgh in the centre, Tim Swinson wins the nod over Grant Gilchrist in the second row and a fourth Glasgow Warrior, Ryan Wilson, is chosen at blindside flanker instead of Johnnie Beattie, who has a virus.

Dunbar, Swinson and Wilson will all make their first Six Nations start as will Saracens’ Duncan Taylor at inside centre.

Sean Maitland moves to the wing to accommodate Hogg at full back.

Scotland team to play Ireland at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin on Sunday, February 2 (kick-off 3pm): Stuart Hogg (Glasgow Warriors), Sean Maitland (Glasgow Warriors), Alex Dunbar (Glasgow Warriors), Duncan Taylor (Saracens), Sean Lamont (Glasgow Warriors), Duncan Weir (Glasgow Warriors), Greig Laidlaw (Edinburgh Rugby), Ryan Grant (Glasgow Warriors), Ross Ford (Edinburgh Rugby), Moray Low (Glasgow Warriors), Tim Swinson (Glasgow Warriors), Jim Hamilton (Montpellier), Ryan Wilson (Glasgow Warriors), Kelly Brown (Saracens, capt), David Denton (Edinburgh Rugby).

Substitutes: Pat MacArthur (Glasgow Warriors), Alasdair Dickinson (Edinburgh Rugby), Geoff Cross (Edinburgh Rugby), Richie Gray (Castres), Johnnie Beattie (Montpellier), Chris Cusiter (Glasgow Warriors), Matt Scott (Edinburgh Rugby), Max Evans (Castres).

Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa). Assistant referees: Jaco Peyper (South Africa) and Mike Fraser (New Zealand). TMO: Carlo Damasco (Italy)