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Nine uncapped players in Scotland squad for SA

Tom Heathcote is in the squad and has also played for England at U20 level

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Article Published: Tuesday 7 May 2013|

Scotland have named nine uncapped players in a 31 man squad for their June tour of South Africa with matches against the Springboks Italy and Samoa.

The tour will see double-header internationals played on three successive weekends in Durban, Nelspruit and Pretoria for the first time and will also involve the hosts, plus Italy and Samoa.

The ground-breaking matches take on added significance as both South Africa and Samoa are in Scotland's pool at the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England.

The Scotland squad comprises 14 players currently with Glasgow Warriors, who are in PRO12 semi-final action against Leinster this Saturday, nine with Edinburgh Rugby and eight Exiles.

The nine potential newcomers are, in the pack, Steven Lawrie, his fellow hooker Pat MacArthur and lock Tim Swinson; and in the backs, Glasgow Warriors' quartet Alex Dunbar, Peter Horne, Peter Murchie and Tommy Seymour, full-back Greig Tonks and wing Duncan Taylor.

Five of the uncapped brigade were part of the Scotland A squad that defeated England Saxons courageously 13-9 in Newcastle in February " Lawrie, Swinson, Dunbar, Tonks and try-scorer Taylor.

Scotland head coach Scott Johnson said: "First up, it's a strong squad designed to win Test matches against quality opposition.

"We've continued to monitor the players' form closely and we've been pleased that Glasgow have reached the knockout stages of the Rabo.

"We are taking the opportunity to have a look at some players and want to assess what they're like at this level. We need to be able to find out whether players who've done the business for their clubs can replicate that form in international footy.

"We also want to enable certain players who are known to us " for example Nick De Luca and Max Evans " to have the sort of off-season physical preparation that they've not had for a few years because of the demands of touring schedules."

The Scotland squad will convene on Monday 27 May for a three day training camp in Perthshire and the Highlands before flying out to South Africa on Friday 31 May.

Scotland squad :

Backs: Alex Dunbar* (Glasgow), Tom Heathcote (Bath/ENG), Peter Horne* (Glasgow), Ruaridh Jackson ( Glasgow), Greig Laidlaw (Edinburgh), Sean Lamont (Glasgow), Peter Murchie* (Glasgow), Henry Pyrgos (Glasgow), Matt Scott (Edinburgh), Tommy Seymour* (Glasgow), Duncan Taylor* (Saracens/ENG), Greig Tonks* (Edinburgh), Tim Visser (Edinburgh)

Forwards: John Barclay (Glasgow), Johnnie Beattie (Montpellier/FRA), Kelly Brown (Saracens/ENG, capt), Geoff Cross (Edinburgh), David Denton (Edinburgh), Alasdair Dickinson (Sale/ENG), Ross Ford (Edinburgh) , Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh), Ryan Grant (Glasgow), Jim Hamilton (Gloucester /ENG), Alastair Kellock (Glasgow), Steven Lawrie* (Edinburgh), Moray Low (Glasgow), Pat MacArthur* (Glasgow), Euan Murray (Worcester/ENG), Alasdair Strokosch (Perpignan/FRA), Tim Swinson* (Glasgow), Ryan Wilson (Glasgow)

* = uncapped

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