Six Nations: Russell dropped by Townsend as Ireland make three changes

By Sports Desk March 17, 2022

Finn Russell has been dropped to the bench for Scotland's final game of the 2022 Six Nations, as coach Gregor Townsend makes two changes to his starting XV for the trip to Ireland.

The Racing 92 half-back, a talismanic presence for his country, has suffered faltering form across the Championship and makes way for Blair Kinghorn.

Exeter Chiefs second-rower Jonny Gray replaces clubmate Sam Skinner in the only other change made by Townsend as his side look to deny their hosts a shot at the title at Aviva Stadium.

Ireland can keep themselves in contention with victory on home soil, along with a win for England against France, with coach Andy Farrell making three swaps for the crunch clash.

Iain Henderson, Jack Conan and Mack Hansen are all drafted in, with the former a direct replacement for James Ryan after he was ruled out with a head injury.

At home, Ireland have won 10 of their 11 Six Nations matches against Scotland, save a loss at Croke Park in 2010, leaving the visitors needing to buck history to finish on a high.

 

Ireland XV: Hugo Keenan, Mack Hansen, Garry Ringrose, Bundee Aki, James Lowe, Johnny Sexton, Jamison Gibson-Park; Cian Healy, Dan Sheehan, Tadhg Furlong, Tadhg Beirne, Iain Henderson;,Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier, Jack Conan.

Replacements: Rob Herring, Dave Kilcoyne, Finlay Bealham, Kieran Treadwell, Peter O'Mahony, Conor Murray, Joey Carbery, Robbie Henshaw.

Scotland XV: Stuart Hogg, Darcy Graham, Chris Harris, Sam Johnson, Kyle Steyn, Blair Kinghorn, Ali Price; Pierre Schoeman, George Turner, Zander Fagerson, Jonny Gray, Grant Gilchrist, Rory Darge, Hamish Watson, Matt Fagerson.

Replacements: Fraser Brown, Allan Dell, WP Nel, Sam Skinner, Josh Bayliss, Ben White, Finn Russell, Mark Bennett.

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