Gregor Townsend

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 Scotland  coach Gregor Townsend: he  is receptive to ideas from his coaching team, and will always test his own theories on the game in a practical way.  Photograph:  Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Drawing a straight-line correlation between Gregor Townsend the former player and his rugby philosophy as a coach may be a fool’s errand for those who(...)

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt issues instructions during training at Carton House on Thursday. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Six Nations: Scotland v Ireland Kick off: 2.15pm, Saturday. Venue: Murrayfield. How to follow: The Irish Times liveblog begins at 1.30pm. On TV: Virg(...)

Ireland’s Tadhg Furlong with David Denton and Pete Horne of Scotland during last year’s Six Nations clash at the Aviva Stadium. Ireland won 28-8. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

One of the issues that spooked Irish players this week was questions about the Rugby World Cup (RWC) later this year. Sensitivities sharpened after de(...)

Scotland’s Josh Strauss catches Italy outhalf  Ian McKinley during the Six Nations game at Murrayfield. Photograph:  Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Josh Strauss has pressed the case for Scotland to take on Ireland in the physicality stakes this Saturday after presenting the compelling evidence for(...)

 Scotland’s Finn Russell in action during the Guinness Six Nations Championship match between Scotland and Italy at Murrayfield on Saturday. Photograph: Stu Forster/Getty Images

Finn Russell. His very name immediately polarises opinion. Many see him as too unpredictable, too unreliable. Others adore his dashing style of outhal(...)

Scotland’s Stuart Hogg scores a try despite the challenge by Angelo Esposito of Italy during their Six Nations match on Saturday. Photograph: Robert Perry/EPA

Scotland assistant coach Mike Blair is not concerned about their defence despite conceding three late tries against Italy. Gregor Townsend’s men had (...)

 Scotland’s Finn Russell in action during their victory over Italy at Murrayfield. Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Scotland 33 Italy 20 Scotland’s bonus-point victory looked like being neatly packaged, resplendent in content and appearance until Simon Berghan’s ye(...)

Scotland’s Blair Kinghorn touches down for one of his three tries  against Italy at Murrayfield. Photograph: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Scotland 33 Italy 20 Blair Kinghorn scored Scotland’s first ever Six Nations hat-trick as they kicked-off this year’s tournament with a 33-20 win ove(...)

Glasgow’s Sam Johnson makes his debut for Scotland at centre  against Italy    at Murrayfield. Photograph:  James Crombie/Inpho

Scotland v Italy, Murrayfield, Saturday 2.15pm (Virgin 1, BBC 1) Scotland coach Gregor Townsend has backed Sam Johnson to take the step up to interna(...)

Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend will hand a Test debut to Glasgow centre Sam Johnson against Italy on Saturday. Photograph: PA

Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend will hand a Test debut to Glasgow centre Sam Johnson when his side open their Guinness Six Nations campaign at hom(...)

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