Johnson: Dropping Kelly was right – but a tough decision

Kelly Brown has been dropped for tomorrow's Calcutta Cup clash

Kelly Brown has been dropped for tomorrow's Calcutta Cup clash

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Scott Johnson admits dropping skipper Kelly Brown from the Scotland team that faces England tomorrow was one of the toughest decisions of his coaching career.

The Dark Blues welcome the Auld Enemy to Murrayfield looking for major improvement after a dismal display against Ireland last Sunday.

The Scots opened up their RBS Six Nations campaign with a 28-6 defeat, with Saracens flanker Brown a faint shadow of his usual combative self at the Aviva Stadium. His No.7 jersey goes to Glasgow’s Chris Fusaro, with Johnson hoping the former Heriot’s forward’s ball-handling skills will come in handy on a muddy pitch.

But that did not make the job of omitting Brown from his Calcutta Cup squad entirely any easier. “It was certainly one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make as Scotland head coach, because there is a human side to this job,” said Johnson.

“We are in the people business and if you don’t care for people you shouldn’t be in it. I care for him and it was a tough decision. He’s a guy I admire but it was the right decision.”