Gregor Townsend reveals date he will name his Rugby World Cup squad

Scotland coach Gregor Townsend. Picture: SNS
Scotland coach Gregor Townsend. Picture: SNS
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Scotland coach Gregor Townsend has revealed that his 31-man squad for the Rugby World Cup in Japan, which starts next month, will be named on Tuesday 3 September, three days before the final warm-up Test at home to Georgia.

Townsend cut his extended training pool from 44 to 40 on Friday, with centre Nick Grigg, centre/wing Kyle Steyn, flanker Gary Graham and scrum-half Henry Pyrgos the men to leave the group.

“Our original plan was to reduce the squad after the first game more with contingency in mind that we could pick up injuries in our first game,” said the coach.

“What we have realised over the last couple of weeks is that having big numbers can be really good for a certain period of training. But as we get closer to the games we are going to be working close with those players who are going to play the game. There was going to be a cut and it has come a week earlier than planned.”

Townsend revealed centre Sam Johnson was a doubt for next Saturday’s opening warm-up Test against France in Nice.

“He tweaked an ankle in a non-contact session – just stood on Adam Hastings’ foot,” explained the coach. “But we don’t have any worries about him for the World Cup. He might just not be available for the first game against France away.”