Scotland will go into their opening match of the Six Nations against Ireland at the Aviva Stadium on February 1 without Finn Russell after he was sent home to his club Racing 92. It has left fans demanding an explanation. 

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Scottish Rugby released this statement on Twitter regarding the announcement: “Stand-off Finn Russell will play no further part in preparations for Scotland’s Six Nations opener against Ireland, having been disciplined for a breach of team protocol during the week’s camp in Edinburgh. He has returned to his club.”

While judgement needs to be reserved until it is clear what has happened, fans have said that they have paid money to watch their team play and they deserve to know why arguably their best player is missing. 

Given the considerable impact that this decision could have on Gregor Townsend’s team, it is understandable that the Scottish public want more clarity on this affair as the statement did not go into any detail. 

While it has been noted that no player is bigger than the team, and Russell should not receive preferential treatment simply because he is one of their most influential players, the lack of an explanation is what is particularly irking so many fans. 

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Alongside captain Stuart Hogg, the fly-half has always been recognised as one of Scotland’s key players and is playing at the top of his game at the moment in France. 

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The game in Dublin has now been described as the perfect opportunity for Adam Hastings to step up and replace Russell. 

The Racing ten is undeniable a pivotal cog in the Scotland team, but Hastings has always been seen as a worthy replacement, who will not have to deputise against Ireland but possibly for the entire tournament. 

The Scottish Rugby Union has not ingratiated itself with the Scottish public in recent weeks after the payments to their executives were revealed – and this will not help their cause nine days before the Six Nations starts. 

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