FORMER Scotland stand-off Brendan Laney has backed fellow New Zealand import Sean Maitland to be a hit for his adopted country.
Maitland is in the Scotland Six Nations squad after joining Glasgow this season after leaving Canterbury Crusaders to seek a new challenge.
The winger qualifies due to his grandparents being from Scotland and, if he lines up against England in Saturday’s Six Nations opener against England at Twickenham, he will do so without any of the controversy surrounding Laney’s Scotland debut.
In 2001, then coach Ian McGeechan fast-tracked Laney into the Scotland side to face his native New Zealand just a week after he joined Edinburgh.
Laney, who went on to earn 20 caps and gather 141 points on the Test stage, is based in Christchurch and knows just how good Maitland is
He said: “Sean is a bloody brilliant player, either at wing or full-back and the most important thing about him is he can slot into whatever team he is put into, which he has shown in his couple of months with Glasgow.
“He is the type of player who will definitely take a mile if you give him an inch.
“I hope he gets a good crack at the Six Nations and that he enjoys it as much as I did. I have marvellous memories that will last for ever and I am sure he will be the same.”
Interim Scotland coach Scott Johnson will today reveal his choice of captain for the Twickenham showdown. Saracens flanker Kelly Brown did the job in the autumn Tests and Glasgow’s Al Kellock is also though to be in the frame.
Maitland will discover tomorrow if he has made the starting line-up when Johnson officially names his team.