- Joe Ansboro into back-line at outside centre
- We need to do everything we can to win – Andy Robinson
Photo: Getty Images
Scotland have made seven changes in their starting team for Saturday’s vital Rugby World Cup Pool B match against England in Auckland.
Following the agonising 12-13 defeat to Argentina last weekend in Wellington, Joe Ansbro – who scored a try in Scotland’s opening Pool B match against Romania earlier this month and also crossed the whitewash to register the decisive score in the victory over Ireland last month – replace Nick De Luca at outside centre.
Sean Lamont moves from the wing to inside centre instead of Graeme Morrison with Simon Danielli, scorer of a second-half try brace against Romania, chosen on the wing. Mike Blair is selected at scrum half to win his 75th cap, ousting Rory Lawson.
In the pack, Euan Murray is reintroduced at tighthead for Geoff Cross while captain Al Kellock returns in the second-row for Jim Hamilton. Richie Vernon is at No. 8 for the injured Kelly Brown, who suffered concussion in the closing stages of the game against the Pumas.
The match at Eden Park will be the 129th occasion the countries have met, stretching back 140 years to the very first rugby international played at Raeburn Place in Edinburgh in 1871. Interestingly, it will be the first time the sides have met on neutral soil.
Scotland head coach Andy Robinson said: “The stage is set for what I am sure will be an occasion worthy of everything this fixture means to both countries and their supporters.
“The atmosphere in Wellington last weekend was exceptional but I believe at a sell-out Eden Park on Saturday it will be even better. What this weekend is about, though, is doing everything we can to win a Test match and qualify for the knockout matches.”
Scotland team to play England at Eden Park, Auckland in Rugby World Cup Pool B on Saturday 1 October.
15 Chris Paterson, 14 Max Evans, 13 Joe Ansbro, 12 Sean Lamont, 11 Simon Danielli,10 Ruaridh Jackson, 9 Mike Blair; 1 Allan Jacobsen, 2 Ross Ford, 3 Euan Murray, 4 Richie Gray, 5 Alastair Kellock (captain), 6 Alasdair Strokosch, 7 John Barclay, 8 Richie Vernon.
Replacements: 16 Scott Lawson, 17 Alasdair Dickinson, 18 Nathan Hines, 19 Ross Rennie, 20 Chris Cusiter, 21 Dan Parks, 22 Nick De Luca.