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Denton named for Roman challenge

25 February 2016

Bath Rugby number eight David Denton will win his 35th Scotland cap in Rome this Saturday (kick-off 2.25pm GMT, ITV).

Another Premiership Rugby player, Harlequins' Tim Visser (who has scored 10 tries in 23 Tests) is the only change to a team that sees centurion Sean Lamont move to the bench, where Head Coach Vern Cotter has made four further changes.

Exeter Chiefs prop Moray Low will look to add to his 29 caps with a first appearance for Scotland since the 2014 summer tour, while 23-year-old Edinburgh Rugby loosehead Rory Sutherland is primed for his international debut. Other changes on the bench see Glasgow Warriors back-row Ryan Wilson and centre Peter Horne named among the replacements, after returning to the squad this week, with Horne proving his readiness in Glasgow Warriors’ bonus-point win over Munster.

Scotland Head Coach Vern Cotter said: “After a week off from the Championship, we have returned to camp fresh and fit, and have prepared well for what will be another formidable opponent.

“Italy have shown they are a talented team, particularly in their performance away against France, but also against England. They surprised both teams with their physicality, intensity and quality, all of which we will have to be ready for, and at least equal to, if we are to win in Rome this weekend.

“We have worked hard to improve our game and will stay true to the core values of this team, which is to work hard but stay calm; have belief in our systems, ourselves, and enjoy the opportunity.”

Scotland and Italy have met 25 times in all, Scotland winning 17, including the two most recent fixtures that saw the Scots secure a home (48-7) and away (16-14) double in preparation for Rugby World Cup 2015. Honours are even in the past two RBS 6 nations meetings however, with each sides winning away.

Scotland team to play Italy at the Stadio Olimpico

15 Stuart Hogg 
14
 Tommy Seymour 
13 Mark Bennett 
12 Duncan Taylor 
11 Tim Visser 
10 Finn Russell 
9 Greig Laidlaw ( c )
1
 Alasdair Dickinson 
2 Ross Ford 
3 Willem Nel 
4 Richie Gray 
5 Jonny Gray 
6 John Barclay
7 John Hardie 
8 David Denton

Replacements

16 Stuart McInally 
17 Rory Sutherland 
18 Moray Low
19 Tim Swinson 
20 Ryan Wilson 
21 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne
22 Peter Horne 
23 Sean Lamont 

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