HOOKER Fraser Brown and lock Tim Swinson replace the suspended duo of Ross Ford and Jonny Gray in the Scotland team to face Australia in Sunday’s Rugby World Cup quarter-final final at Twickenham.
Head coach Vern Cotter has also brought in Blair Cowan to play at blindside flanker and Peter Horne at centre, with Ryan Wilson and Matt Scott both out of the squad, the latter with back pain. Richie Vernon covers centre from the bench, with new cap centurion Sean Lamont also among the replacements.
Scotland are still awaiting to have their appeal heard over the three-week bans handed to Ford and Gray by the tournament’s judicial panel for dangerous tackling in last Saturday’s 36-33 win over Samoa.
Cotter said: “It’s always nice to be part of the final eight of any qualifying competition, the guys are very excited about being here.
“We will go into this game with the belief that we can compete with and dominate a very strong Australian team, and move forward to the last four.
“They are a front-foot momentum team so defence will be key but also getting our hands on the ball and expressing ourselves as we like to.”
Scotland team (v Australia, Rugby World Cup quarter-final, Sunday 4pm): 15 Stuart Hogg; 14 Sean Maitland, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Peter Horne, 11 Tommy Seymour; 10 Finn Russell, 9 Greig Laidlaw (capt), 1 Alasdair Dickinson, 2 Fraser Brown, 3 WP Nel, 4 Richie Gray, 5 Tim Swinson, 6 Blair Cowan, 7 John Hardie, 8 David Denton. SUBS: 16 Kevin Bryce, 17 Gordon Reid, 18 Jon Welsh, 19 Alasdair Strokosch, 20 Josh Strauss, 21 Henry Pyrgos, 22 Richie Vernon, 23 Sean Lamont