Scotland sweat on Gray fitness
November 6, 2012
Richie Gray could sit out Scotland's match with New Zealand on Sunday © Getty Images
Scotland are facing an anxious wait over the fitness of star second-row Richie Gray ahead of their match with the All Blacks on Sunday.
Gray is continuing to receive treatment for an ankle injury and was a late withdrawal from the Sale Sharks side prior to their clash with London Irish on Friday evening. Sale boss Steve Diamond suggested that he was a doubt for the match with New Zealand on Sunday and these fears were further compounded when he missed full training with the national side on Monday.
If Gray is absent against the All Blacks, head coach Andy Robinson will be forced into at least five changes from the side which began Scotland's last Test, the win in Samoa back in June. Four players who started against Samoa are definitely out.
Centre Joe Ansbro and scrum-half Chris Cusiter are not available due to injury, number eight Richie Vernon did not make the initial squad and tight-head prop Euan Murray is not available as the All Blacks clash falls on a Sunday.
Gloucester's Jim Hamilton, provided he is fit after a rib problem, and Saracens' Kelly Brown, the new captain, are available again after missing the summer tour and could replace Gray and Vernon, respectively. Geoff Cross is a like-for-like replacement for Murray, Mike Blair for Cusiter and Nick De Luca for Ansbro but Robinson could make further changes if Gray fails to recover in time.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"I had a perfect record against England as did a few other Welshmen. England always seemed to bring the best out of us." John Taylor on the age-old rivalry
Are the margins between the teams in the Six Nations getting smaller year-on-year? Huw Richards gives some answers
Martin Gillingham looks at the state of play in the Top 14 and gives his take on the club versus country battle harming the prospects of the French side
Manu Tuilagi, Cockerill's psychological warfare and Saracens' brute strength - it is the Monday Maul