Andy Robinson still holds out hope of Shingler call-up

HEAD coach Andy Robinson remains optimistic Steven Shingler will be permitted to represent Scotland, despite the International Rugby Board announcing the Swansea-born back is tied to Wales.

The 20-year-old fly-half or centre was included in Robinson’s provisional Scotland squad for the RBS Six Nations, sparking an investigation into his eligibility.

The SRU believed the London Irish player qualified through his Dumfries-born mother, but the WRU contended Shingler was tied to them having played for their Under-20s side against France in 2011, despite having not signed a declaration to that effect. On Thursday it was ruled Shingler is eligible only for Wales but there remains a glimmer of hope for Scotland as the eligibility criteria could be overhauled by the IRB council in May, excluding under-20 teams from being a capturing team.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The IRB council can overturn decisions by the regulations committee and though any new law would not be applied retroactively, Shingler’s case arose during the review on eligibility launched in April 2011 – meaning it is feasible they could reopen the door for him to represent Scotland.

Robinson said: “The ruling has been made but it will now go to the council. What we are pleased about is that the Under-20s cannot capture players in the future. It looks like one game has captured one player. Because of that we feel we can proceed further in support of the player.”

l The Thistle Suite in the West Stand will open at 1.30pm today for supporters wishing to watch Wales v Italy and Scotland v Ireland on the big screens. Last orders at the bar are at 7.30pm.