Jonny Gray ruled out of the rest of the Six Nations
Gray missed today’s Premiership 15-14 win over Newcastle and has spent the week in a boot to protect the foot injury which leaves Scotland with a major hole to fill in their pack against the unbeaten French at Murrayfield on Saturday who have also been hit by injury problems.
Rob Baxter, the Exeter director of rugby, delivered the grim news for Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend saying: “It is likely to be the length of the Six Nations – not too much longer than that and obviously he is disappointed. He has had an injury hit period over the last nine months or so and it (ankle)will get better in seven or eight weeks. It is like a bad ankle sprain and it doesn’t require an operation just rehab. There is some thought that the last Six Nations game might be within reach but I think that is tough.”
However, Scotland will be relieved that captain Stuart Hogg, who also missed the Exeter game, with an injury is expected to be fully fit for Saturday’s match at Murrayfield. Scotland are hoping to upset France and erase the memory of their loss to Wales which deflated the country after the win over England.
Sam Skinner, who was fit to take his place in the Exeter back row at Kingston Park, now becomes a secondrow option for Townsend who will keenly aware of the power of the French pack. Skinner played blindside flanker in the loss to Wales but could end up at lock against France along Grant Gilchrist who won his 50th cap in Cardiff. Gray is a significant loss as the 6ft 6ins former Glasgow forward has won 64 caps.
Meanwhile, France coach Fabien Galthie has named three new players in his expanded 42-player squad for the Six Nations Championship clash with Scotland at Murrayfield on Saturday.
Lock Florent Vanverberghe, loose-forward Swan Rebbadj and flyhalf Antoine Hastoy were all injured playing for their Top 14 clubs this weekend, and are replaced by Pierre-Henri Azagoh, Jordan Joseph and Anthony Bouthier respectively.
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