Mark Dodson says Scotland selection of 'Edinburgh Six' is up to Gregor Townsend

Mark Dodson has said he will not get involved in deciding whether the six Scotland players disciplined for breaching team protocols during the Six Nations will be selected for the summer tour of South America.

Scotland’s Stuart Hogg, Finn Russell and Ali Price were among the six who reportedly breached team protocols. (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)
Scotland’s Stuart Hogg, Finn Russell and Ali Price were among the six who reportedly breached team protocols. (Photo by Ross MacDonald / SNS Group)

National coach Gregor Townsend will name his squad on Wednesday, with Scotland scheduled to play an A international against Chile in Santiago on June 25 followed by three Tests against Argentina in July.

It is a gruelling programme involving travelling to provincial enclaves in Argentina and Townsend is likely to pick an enlarged squad for Scotland’s first games since their defeat by Ireland on March 19.

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The end of the Six Nations campaign was blighted by the incident involving captain Stuart Hogg, Finn Russell, Ali Price, Darcy Graham, Sam Johnson and Sione Tuipulotu. The group were punished for reportedly leaving the team hotel to visit a bar in Edinburgh after returning from Rome following the win over Italy.

Dodson refused to say if the players had been fined.

“There were conversations that took place at the time between Gregor, the management group and the players generally and that is something that has been dealt with and we have moved on from there,” said the chief executive.

Asked if the transgression was likely to influence their selection, Dodson added: “That is for the national team and the national team coaches. I don’t get involved in that.”

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Mark Dodson, right, said he would leave selection issues to Gregor Townsend.

Dodson is keen to move on from a disappointing Six Nations campaign which saw Scotland beat England and Italy but lose to Wales, France and Ireland. The focus, he said, was now on preparing for next year’s Rugby World Cup in France.

“The countdown begins. There are three games in Argentina, who are under a new coach. We did quite well the last time we went out there in 2018.

“This squad has been very deep in terms of quality and this will be a proper test for our guys. You may have noticed the games scheduled for November as well are a real test for the squad so we are now on that last lap before the World Cup. We are making sure that we are playing against the best teams of the world before then.”

Scotland’s autumn programme consists of home games against Australia, Fiji, New Zealand and Argentina.

If the men’s team’s Six Nations was disappointing, it was worse for the women’s side and the men’s Under-20s who lost all their matches.

Dodson said the women’s side’s main goal had been qualifying for this year's World Cup which was achieved with memorable victories over Ireland and Colombia.

“The game goes through peaks and troughs,” said Dodson. “It is a rollercoaster. I think what we have got to do is get more even performances across the piece. From a women’s perspective we peaked for that World Cup qualification game and coming off that the Six Nations was always going to be difficult for us.

“In terms of one or two bad results and disappointments there have been a lot of high spots as well. We have to take this in the round really. The one thing I would say is that the idea of peaking for the World Cup every four years, these days have gone. You have to be playing pretty well consistently all the time now.”

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