Scotland confirm 2015 Rugby World Cup squad

Scotland head coach Vern Cotter has named his 31-man squad for the 2015 Rugby
World Cup in England with scrum-half Greig Laidlaw as captain.

The squad features a mix of 17 forwards and 14 backs and includes just one
uncapped player in South African born Joshua Strauss.

Three of the group – Alasdair Dickinson, Ross Ford and Sean Lamont –
are set for their third outing in the competition, while a further three –
Richie Gray, Alasdair Strokosch and Richie Vernon – approach a second.

Vernon will be the first player to be selected for Scotland in a Rugby World
Cup as both a forward and a back, adding to his 2011 appearance as a number
8.

Cotter said,”We’re very pleased to name the 31 and we’re confident these
players will represent Scotland well in the Rugby World Cup.

“It’s been a tough but rewarding two months. We’re proud of the effort
everyone has put in to this point.

“Getting down to 31 has been a difficult process because all the players
have represented themselves well in the opportunities given.

“There are some good players and good people who haven’t made it. We obviously
feel for them and would like to thank them for all their efforts, however we
must now move forward to our last preparation match against France before embarking
on our Rugby World Cup campaign.”

Scotland will open their Rugby World Cup account against Japan at Kingsholm
Stadium on Wednesday 23 September (kick-off 2.30pm).

They will then travel north to Leeds to face USA at Elland Road (Sunday 27
September), followed by South Africa and Samoa on consecutive Saturdays (3 and
10 October) at St James’ Park, Newcastle.

Cotter added,”We felt the split of 17 forwards and 14 backs gives us
the best balance.

“We have two games in four days followed by South Africa and Samoa, so
we need to be robust and covered in both forwards and backs, while knowing we
have players in the group who can play several positions.

“We’ll now concentrate our efforts on this group to fine tune a couple
of things in detail.

“There are fine margins in this sport at this level so we have to make
sure we have got everything ticked off as best as possible, through our organisation,
our work-rate and a raft of other details that we’ll work through methodically.

“We know the Rugby World Cup is not far away, and we’re very excited about
the event, for which we’re working very hard to perform, do well and represent
the thistle on the world stage.”

Scotland Rugby World Cup squad

PROPS
Alasdair Dickinson (Edinburgh Rugby); 46 caps; 4 RWC appearances (2007 and
2011)
Ryan Grant (Glasgow Warriors); 23 caps
Gordon Reid (Glasgow Warriors); 11 caps
Willem Nel (Edinburgh Rugby); 2 caps
Jon Welsh (Newcastle Falcons); 6 caps

HOOKERS
Fraser Brown (Glasgow Warriors); 9 caps
Ross Ford (Edinburgh Rugby); 88 caps, 8 RWC appearances (2007 and 2011)
Stuart McInally (Edinburgh Rugby); 2 caps

SECOND-ROW
Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh Rugby); 10 caps
Jonny Gray (Glasgow Warriors); 14 caps
Richie Gray (Castres); 45 caps; 4 RWC appearances (2011)
Tim Swinson (Glasgow Warriors); 12 caps

BACK-ROW
David Denton (Edinburgh Rugby); 27 caps
John Hardie (Unattached); 1 cap
Josh Strauss (Glasgow Warriors); uncapped
Alasdair Strokosch (Perpignan); 45 caps; 3 RWC appearances (2011)
Ryan Wilson (Glasgow Warriors); 10 caps

SCRUM-HALF
Sam Hidalgo-Clyne (Edinburgh Rugby); 7 caps
Greig Laidlaw CAPTAIN (Gloucest

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