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Robinson focused on France

Scotland head coach Andy Robinson sees no reason to name Alastair Kellock as the team's captain for anything more than next week's RBS 6 Nations opener in France.

Kellock was named after missing the autumn Test series following knee surgery. Robinson used scrum-halves Rory Lawson and Mike Blair then, but Kellock's performances on his return for Glasgow saw him restored to the role.

"It's just the way we want to work," said Robinson. "I think you can get too far ahead of yourself. What's important is that Al's performing at his very best and one of his strengths is his ability to lead from the front."

Scotland beat world champions South Africa in November and with victories over Ireland at the end of last year's Six Nations and also during the summer tour of Argentina they have won five of their last six games. However, they could not face a tougher opener than Grand Slam champions France in Paris.

The French were thrashed by Australia two months ago, but Robinson is not under-estimating the size of the task.

"Everybody says how unpredictable the French are, but we have huge respect for them," he said. "What beating South Africa did for us was show the level of performance we can get to. It's now about putting those games back-to-back."

Wales head coach Warren Gatland insists he does not regret his recent comments about England hooker Dylan Hartley ahead of next Friday's clash in Cardiff.

Gatland said he saw Hartley "go to pieces" playing for Northampton against Leicester and added: "It just shows people can crack under pressure. It's another case of a Kiwi choking on the big occasion.

"Dylan Hartley always seems to have a lot to say for himself, but we will see what he's got next week.

"Some of what he said was responsible for Richie Rees being banned for a lengthy period, yet he wasn't prepared to step outside with Gareth Williams when he was invited to do so. So we'll see how he fronts up on February 4."


From Belfast Telegraph