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Quartet handed Scotland A call

Young Scotland hopefuls Richie Gray, Richie Vernon, Kyle Traynor and Alex Grove have been called into the Scotland A team for Friday's match against Italy.

Lock Gray played in the RBS 6 Nations games against Wales and France, while the other three made their full international debuts against Fiji in November. Winger Simon Webster is the most experienced player in a youthful side with just seven capped players and coach Sean Lineen has urged his team to use the match in Biella in northern Italy to further their full international prospects.

"This is about players wanting to make that next step and a lot of these players are trying to make a name for themselves in the game," said Lineen.

"This match is a step along that route towards playing regular test rugby for Scotland.

"I saw Alex Grove during the IRB Nations Cup in the summer and he also played well during the Autumn Tests.

"Richie Vernon is coming back from injury and Richie Gray had a taste of playing for Scotland.

"All these players now have an opportunity to shine and put their hands up for Scotland selection."

Lineen has promoted Mark Robertson to the starting line-up after he came off the bench to claim a try when a more experienced side lost 34-19 to Ireland Wolfhounds three weeks ago.

He added: "Mike Blair, Euan Murray and Jim Hamilton are now all back in the Scotland set-up, so it shows that this team is used as a platform."

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