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Parks gears up for World Cup place

Dan Parks hopes to mastermind a victory for Scotland in Saturday's EMC Test with Italy to ensure his place in the Rugby World Cup squad and reclaim his starting spot.

Parks was this week named in the team for Saturday's final Rugby World Cup warm-up clash at Murrayfield, earning his first start at fly-half since February's RBS 6 Nations loss to Wales.

Parks, who has won 61 caps since making his debut in 2004, said: "I had a long run there for a while and was on the bench for the last couple of games in the Six Nations which was obviously disappointing. I've had a good pre-season and I'm ready and raring to go and hopefully things will go well this weekend."

Parks initially was absent from Robinson's early squads, but forced an international return and began 11 successive Tests before being omitted midway through the Six Nations as Scotland attempted to utilise Jackson's more expansive game.

Jackson, though, is yet to fulfil his potential and Parks could travel to New Zealand as first-choice with a strong display against the Azzurri.

Long feted for his tactical kicking game, Parks believes continual improvements with the ball in hand will benefit his chances and on Saturday he will seek to release a back division comprising Graeme Morrison, Nick De Luca, Simon Danielli, Max Evans and Rory Lamont.

The Cardiff Blues back added: "You're always trying to improve your game in every aspect.

"I'll be looking to play in the right areas, put the forwards on the front foot and hopefully if we can do that it will be a good day.

"It's about myself but also about bringing other guys into the game as well - trying to get the backline flowing and moving the ball to our dangermen out wide.

"We'll be trying to bring a brand of rugby we're looking to play in New Zealand."


From Belfast Telegraph