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Only one change for Scotland as they face Black Ferns

By Lucy Lomax
Rhona Lloyd of Scotland makes a break during the Pool A Rugby World Cup 2021 match between Scotland and Australia at Northland Events Centre on October 15, 2022, in Whangarei, New Zealand.

Scotland Head Coach Bryan Easson has made one change to the starting line-up ahead of this weekend’s final Rugby World Cup Pool A fixture against hosts, New Zealand, at Northland Events Centre, Whangarei (kick-off 4.45am UK time / 4.45pm NZ time).

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Shona Campbell moves to full-back from the bench, as she replaces Chloe Rollie who was ruled out of the remainder of the tournament earlier this week after sustaining an arm injury during the Australia game.

Easson has also added four players to his replacements, with Katie Dougan, Louise McMillan, Meryl Smith and Liz Musgrove adding options from the bench.

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Easson said: “Last weekend’s result was a tough one to take but I can’t fault the passion, determination and belief the squad displayed against Australia. We’ve had a really good review this week and we will be looking to make sure we are clinical in executing our game plan against the Black Ferns.

“We’ve got two losing bonus points against two good sides and we are now looking to push on and show everyone that we are still in the fight.”

An unchanged front-row sees hooker Lana Skeldon pack down alongside Molly Wright and Christine Belisle, while Emma Wassell links up with Sarah Bonar again in the second-row.

Jade Konkel-Roberts anchors the back-row with captain Rachel Malcolm and Rachel McLachlan.

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Vice-captain Helen Nelson continues her half-back partnership with Caity Mattinson, while Lisa Thomson and Emma Orr are once again named at inside centre and outside centre respectively.

The back-three sees Shona Campbell at full-back, while Hannah Smith and Rhona Lloyd line up on the wing.

Scotland team to face New Zealand:
15. Shona Campbell (University of Edinburgh) – 8 caps
14. Rhona Lloyd (Les Lionnes du Stade Bordelais) – 41 caps
13. Emma Orr (Biggar) – 5 caps
12. Lisa Thomson (Sale Sharks) – 48 caps
11. Hannah Smith (Watsonians) – 36 caps
10. Helen Nelson VICE-CAPTAIN (Loughborough Lightning) – 45 caps
9. Caity Mattinson (University of Worcester Warriors Women) – 8 caps
1. Molly Wright (Sale Sharks) – 17 caps
2. Lana Skeldon (University of Worcester Warriors Women) – 56 caps
3. Christine Belisle (Loughborough Lightning) – 20 caps
4. Emma Wassell (Loughborough Lightning) – 59 caps
5. Sarah Bonar (Harlequins) – 33 caps
6. Rachel Malcolm CAPTAIN (Loughborough Lightning) – 32 caps
7. Rachel McLachlan (Sale Sharks) – 30 caps
8. Jade Konkel-Roberts (Harlequins) – 55 caps

Replacements
16. Jodie Rettie (Saracens) – 19 caps
17. Leah Bartlett (Loughborough Lightning) – 20 caps
18. Katie Dougan (Gloucester-Hartpury) – 16 caps
19. Lyndsay O’Donnell (University of Worcester Warriors Women) – 16 caps
20. Louise McMillan (Saracens) – 38 caps
21. Mairi McDonald (Hillhead Jordanhill) – 8 caps
22. Meryl Smith (University of Edinburgh) – 3 caps
23. Liz Musgrove (Watsonians) – 10 caps

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Shaylen 4 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

These guys will be utility players Nick it cannot be helped because coaches cannot help themselves. Rassie looks at players like these and sees the ability to cover multiple positions without losing much. It allows the 6-2 or 7-1. He wont change his coaching style or strategy for one player. At provincial level players like these are indispensable. If there is an injury to your starting 12 but your back up 12 is a bit iffy then a coach is going to go with the back up 10 who is gold and who can play a good 12. Damian Willemse for the Springboks is an obvious case, for the Stormers its the same. Dobson plays him at 12 or 15, with Gelant in the team he plays 12 but if Gelant goes down he doesnt go for his back up 15, he just puts Willemse there. With Frawley its the same at international and provincial level. He just slots in wherever. Frans Steyn made a career out of it. He was much maligned though as a youngster as he never fully developed into any role. He then went to Japan and France to decide for himself what kind of player he was, put on muscle and retained his big boot, ran over players and booted the ball long and came back into the Springboks after about 3 years away and was then certain about how he wanted to play the game no matter what position. Coaches cannot help themselves because they only want what is best for their teams and that means putting your most talented players on even if it means you cause them some discomfort. Sometimes players need to decide how they want to play the game and then adapt that to every position and let the coach decide how they want to use them.

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J
Jon 10 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

I think the main problem here is the structure of both countries make up. They are going to have very similar.. obstacles(not problems). It will just be part of the evolution of their rugby and they’ll need to find a way to make this versatility more advantageous than specialization. I think South Africa are well on the way to that end already, but Ireland are more likely to have a hierarchical approach and move players around the provinces. Ioane is going to be more than good enough to lock up one of those available positions for more than a few years I believe though. Morgan would definitely be a more long term outlook. Sacha to me has the natural footwork of a second five. Not everything is about winning, if a team has 3 players that want to play 10s just give them all a good go even if its to the detriment of everyone, this is also about dreams of the players, not just the fans. This is exactly how it would be in an amateur club setting. Ultimately some players just aren’t suited to any one position. The example was of a guy that had size and speed, enough pace to burn, power to drive, and speed to kick and pass long, but just not much else when it came to actual rugby (that matched it). New Zealand has it’s own example with Jordie Barrett and probably shows what Reece Hodge could have been if the game in Australia had any administration. Despite the bigger abundance of talent in NZ, Jordie was provided with consistent time as a fullback, before being ushered in as a second five. Possibly this was due to his blood, and another might not have been as fortunate, but it is what it was, a complete contrast to how Hodge was used in Australia, were he could have had any position he wanted. When it comes down to it though, much like these young fellas, it will be about what they want, and I think you’ll find they’ll be like Hodge and just want to be as valuable to the team as they can and play wherever. It’s not like 63 International Cap is a hard thing to live with as a result of that decision!

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