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Rowe in for Kinghorn for Scotland’s Six Nations opener, Winnett handed Wales debut

Kyle Rowe will start at full-back when Scotland begin their Six Nations campaign with Saturday’s trip to Cardiff to face Wales, with Blair Kinghorn ruled out due to injury.

Kinghorn will miss Scotland’s first two games of the Six Nations with a knee issue, opening the door for Rowe to win just his second international cap in the Welsh capital.

Rowe only lasted 12 minutes after coming on as a replacement for his Scotland debut against Argentina in 2022, suffering an anterior cruciate ligament injury.

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The 25-year-old has scored seven tries for Glasgow Warriors this season and will be desperate to play his part in a memorable success for Scotland, who have not beaten Wales in Cardiff since 2002.

Their last victory in Wales came in Llanelli during the 2020 edition of the Six Nations, which was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wales, meanwhile, have handed a debut to full-back Cameron Winnett, while Owen Watkin has replaced the injured George North at centre.

Flanker James Botham and prop Leon Brown have also been recalled by Warren Gatland, while lock Dafydd Jenkins – at the age of 21 years and 60 days – will become his country’s second-youngest captain.

Gatland told the Welsh Rugby Union’s website: “We’ve got some players who were involved in the World Cup so have some experience and some exciting youngsters and when I look at that forward pack, it’s not a small forward pack. It’s a big forward pack.

“The players understand how important this first game is in the competition. The sold-out stadium, go out there, you get the Six Nations off to a good start, you can create some momentum.

“I’ve been really pleased with their attitude and the way that they’ve trained this week and we should be really excited about this first game.”

Wales team to face Scotland: Cameron Winnett, Josh Adams, Owen Watkin, Nick Tompkins, Rio Dyer, Sam Costelow, Gareth Davies; Corey Domachowski, Ryan Elias, Leon Brown, Adam Beard, Dafydd Jenkins (c), James Botham, Tommy Reffell, Aaron Wainwright.

Replacements: Elliot Dee, Kemsley Mathias, Keiron Assiratti, Teddy Williams, Alex Mann, Tomos Williams, Ioan Lloyd, Mason Grady.

Scotland team to face Wales: Kyle Rowe, Kyle Steyn, Huw Jones, Sione Tuipulotu, Duhan van der Merwe, Finn Russell (c), Ben White; Pierre Schoeman, George Turner, Zander Fagerson, Richie Gray, Scott Cummings, Luke Crosbie, Jamie Ritchie, Matt Fagerson.

Replacements: Ewan Ashman, Alec Hepburn, Elliot Millar-Mills, Sam Skinner, Jack Dempsey, George Horne, Ben Healy, Cameron Redpath.

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.
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