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.
Huw Richards profiles French forward Walter Spanghero, a man who even rugby's hard men thought was a tough nut
"To be part of the Commonwealth Games, I'd wear anything. I'd wear a clown suit." Tom Hamilton talks to Scotland's Sean Lamont
Scrum Sevens looks back at how rugby has fared in both the early Olympics and the past four Commonwealth Games
"Cheika's been phenomenal. He gives you an incredible level of mental strength." Tom Hamilton talks to Waratahs star Jacques Potgieter