Six Nations: Gregor Townsend says there could be a role for teenage scrum-half Jamie Dobie
The teenage Glasgow Warriors scrum-half is one of three young players invited to train with the squad, the others being Edinburgh backrower Rory Darge and Glasgow wing Rufus MacLean.
Dobie is highly regarded and signed a new club contract last week but the 19-year-old has played only 15 times for the Warriors.
Nevertheless, with only two recognised scrum-halves - Ali Price and Scott Steele - Townsend admitted that any last-minute emergencies could see Dobie drafted in.
Sam Hidalgo-Clyne was involved in the autumn and would appear to be the next scrum-half on the rank, but the vagaries of travel under Covid restrictions could make it tricky for the Exeter-based player to join up at short notice.
“Regarding 9, Jamie Dobie’s invited in to train with us so he’ll cover anything if needs be at training but we know Sam Hidalgo-Clyne is available if we need to call on him,” said Townsend.
“He was in our squad in the Autumn Nations Cup but he’s another one we made a decision on regarding in and out of camps and not being there for match weekends if he didn’t make the 23.”
Asked specifically what he would do if one of his regular scrum-halves was injured, Townsend added: “That would be a decision we’d have to make, if Jamie’s been around the group and trained he could be in that position.
“I think logistically it’s going to be really difficult for us to bring a player back from down south – the lack of flights now. So if it was the morning of a game or the day before it could be difficult.
“It may be we’d look at someone else who’s based in Scotland, Jamie would be one but Henry Pyrgos is an experienced player who could do that. But the practicalities now of getting players back and moving between environments have been factors in our discussions which has never been the case before.”
Townsend has selected two frontline stand-offs in Finn Russell and Jaco van der Walt but pointed out that Stuart Hogg, James Lang, Blair Kinghorn and Cam Redpath could all cover at 10.
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