Hamish Watson is to miss the rest of Edinburgh’s season as well as Scotland’s summer tour of the Americas after opting to have surgery on a shoulder problem.
The openside flanker, who last played in the Six Nations match against Italy, took the decision after consulting Gregor Townsend and Richard Cockerill, head coaches of Scotland and Edinburgh respectively.
“Hamish is going to have surgery on his shoulder on Thursday, because he’s got a problem with his a/c,” Cockerill revealed. “It’s something that we probably could have managed through, but he’s been struggling with this for a little while, so we’ve chosen to get it done now because he’ll then be fully fit for pre-season. It’s going to be a big season.”
The loss of Watson is a major blow to Edinburgh. If they beat Ulster at home on Friday they will qualify for the PRO14 end-of-season play-offs. They have two remaining regular-season games, against the Scarlets and then Glasgow Warriors. Scrum-half Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, who has missed the last two matches after sustaining a head injury in the win over Munster last month, could come into contention for a place against Ulster.