Stuart Hogg: Gregor Townsend refuses to guarantee full-back will remain Scotland captain

Gregor Townsend has refused to guarantee Stuart Hogg will remain as national captain next season as he reflected on a Six Nations campaign in which Scotland finished in the bottom half of the table for the fourth year in a row.

The Scots lost three of their five games, ending the championship with a 26-5 defeat by Ireland in the Aviva Stadium.

The build-up to the match in Dublin was overshadowed by reports of an unauthorised night out in Edinburgh last weekend involving six players, including Hogg.

The full-back skippered the team against Ireland but Townsend was giving little away regarding his longer-term plans.

Stuart Hogg took over the Scotland captaincy at the start of the 2020 Six Nations. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

“Stuart is our captain just now,” said the head coach. “He led the team on Saturday. It’s a long time until our next tournament. He’s been our captain for the last couple of years. We’ll have to reflect on everything. It’s not something we’re thinking about now as it’s a long while until we play our next game.”

Scotland are planning a tour of South America this summer where they are expected to play three Test matches against Argentina and a development game against Chile.

It may be that senior players such as Hogg and Finn Russell sit out the tour after a long, gruelling season which has seen them go from the Lions tour in South Africa into a busy domestic programme with their clubs.

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Hogg took over the captaincy at the start of the 2020 Six Nations.

Townsend, meanwhile, confirmed his intention to remain at the helm for next year’s Rugby World Cup. Asked if there was any possibility of his stepping away before the tournament in France, he replied simply: “No.”

The coach also revealed that No 8 Matt Fagerson will be out for a number of weeks after injuring his arm against Ireland.

“His arm’s in a sling,” said Townsend. “I know he’s spoken to a surgeon, an expert on arm injuries. He’s had an X-ray so I would imagine it will be a few weeks.

“He just needs to confirm whether he needs an operation or rest but it’s a similar arm injury to what he’s had previously.”

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