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Highlights on Off The Ball

Gregor Townsend has announced his 38 man Six Nations squad with Stuart Hogg given the honour of captaining the side for the tournament.

Scotland will be Andy Farrell's first opponents as Ireland head coach at The Aviva Stadium on February first. There are 17 backs and 21 forwards in the Scotland panel.

Stuart Hogg is a dual championship player of the tournament (2016 and 2017) and the British & Irish Lion is the most experienced player on Townsend's panel.

Scotland will want to improve markedly on 2019 when they only registered a single win in the tournament, spared a wooden spoon by the continued haplessness of the Italians.

It was a disappointing outcome for the kilt-wearers, who managed a third-place finish in 2018, ahead of both England and France.

Skipper

After the squad announcement, Townsend said of his skipper: “Stuart is very passionate about playing for Scotland and he’s determined to do all he can to improve Scotland.

"He really cares about playing for his country, what the jersey represents and also getting the best out of his teammates.

“He’s a really intelligent rugby player who’s is learning and improving with every season. Stuart’s very good at bringing others into the game and building relationships with those around him.

“He’s very well respected by our coaching and playing group but that isn’t based on the accolades he’s earned. It’s more about what he does every day at training.

Townsend praised what Stuart Hoog brings to the player group: "He brings energy, is very accurate, he stays out longer to work on his game and more often than not he’s the loudest player on the field, guiding or congratulating his teammates.

“He really wanted to take on the honour and responsibility of being captain, which was a huge positive and – having heard his plans for how he would work as a captain and work to bring the best out of others while being able to focus on his own game – meant it became a relatively straightforward decision.

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