Six Nations

Scotland want all their players free for rescheduled France Six Nations clash

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Gregor Townsend (Getty)
Gregor Townsend (Getty)

Scotland coach Gregor Townsend has urged Six Nations chiefs to make sure their re-arranged fixture against France goes ahead at a time when he can select a full-strength side.

Sunday's scheduled clash at the Stade de France was postponed on Thursday when another France player tested positive for the coronavirus, taking the tally of confirmed cases in the French camp to 16.

Playing the third-round match next weekend, during one of the tournament's rest weeks, presents a potential problem for Scotland as they could be without at least 10 players because of their commitments at non-Scottish clubs.

Under World Rugby regulations, clubs are not required to release players for Tests that fall outside designated international windows.

"We will wait to see what options are available to play this match against France, but it remains our position that we want to have all our eligible players available to us for that fixture, so we can compete to the level we would have done this weekend," Townsend said in a statement issued by the Scottish Rugby Union.

The former Scotland fly-half said his side had "worked hard" to maintain strict Covid-19 protocols in both the Six Nations and the Autumn Nations Cup.

Townsend, who played club rugby in France for Brive and Castres, expressed his disappointment at the postponement, while stressing Scotland "fully accept" the decision.

Scotland stunned reigning champions England in their tournament opener at Twickenham before losing 25-24 to Wales at Murrayfield.

"We wish all the French players and staff affected by Covid well in their recovery and look forward to playing them at a future date," said Townsend.

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