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Cotter gives uncapped duo Scots chance

By Robert Jones

Vern Cotter has selected two uncapped forwards in his Scotland squad for what is his final Six Nations at the helm.

Cotter, who will take up the head coach's role in Montpellier ahead of next season and is to be replaced by Glasgow's Gregor Townsend, named a 37-man panel yesterday, which includes international newcomers Simon Berghan and Cornell du Preez of Edinburgh.

Kiwi prop Berghan is eligible for selection through his grandfather, while South African back-row Du Preez qualifies through the residency rule.

Cotter will be without No.8 David Denton and is waiting to hear whether a neck injury will preclude tighthead WP Nel from taking part. Scotland face Ireland in their opener in Murrayfield on February 4, and Joe Schmidt is expected to name his squad on Sunday.

Elsewhere, Guy Noves ended Toulouse centre Yann David's eight-year stint in the wilderness when he named him in France's Six Nations squad.

Noves overlooked centres Maxime Mermoz and Mathieu Bastareaud, as well as out-half Jules Plisson and full-back Brice Dulin.

Meanwhile, former Ireland team doctor Éanna Falvey has been named as head of medical staff for the Lions' tour of New Zealand this summer.

Finally, 47-time capped All Black out-half Aaron Cruden will join Montpellier next season.

Belfast Telegraph

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