Scotland's Premiership players in limbo

by AFP

Scotland coach Vern Cotter hopes the five England-based players he selected in a 31-man squad for the November internationals will be available despite a payment row that threatens their participation.

Greig Laidlaw, the Scotland captain (Gloucester), Sean Maitland (Saracens), Tim Visser (Harlequins), Duncan Taylor (Saracens) and Moray Low (Exeter) all play for English Premiership clubs.

But their involvement in next month's Tests against Australia, Argentina and Georgia has been called into question by a row between Premiership Rugby Ltd (PRL) -- the body which represents English club sides -- and the Scottish Rugby Union over an outstanding £400,000 ($489,000) injury compensation bill.

Sean Maitland's availability for Scotland is in doubt. Photo: Getty ImagesEven though the matches take place in World Rugby's designated 'window' for internationals, the Premiership clubs have voted to withdraw their Scotland internationals -- along with players representing Italy, Samoa and Tonga involved in a similar dispute - until the money is paid.

But Cotter hope scrum-half Laidlaw, backs Maitland and Taylor, wing Visser and prop forward Low will all be available for Scotland duty in November.

"That is an executive issue and (Scottish Rugby Union chief executive) Mark Dodson is dealing with that at the minute, so I'm not sure where it's going to get to," said the New Zealander after announcing his squad.

"But we are anticipating having the players available to us, so I will let the whole thing unfold over the next couple of days, then we will know a bit more," Cotter added.

Scotland squad


Stuart Hogg (Glasgow), Damien Hoyland (Edinburgh), Sean Maitland (Saracens/ENG), Tommy Seymour (Glasgow), Tim Visser (Harlequins/ENG), Mark Bennett (Glasgow), Alex Dunbar (Glasgow), Huw Jones (Stormers/RSA), Duncan Taylor (Saracens/ENG), Pete Horne (Glasgow), Finn Russell (Glasgow), Greig Laidlaw (Gloucester/ENG, capt), Henry Pyrgos (Glasgow)


John Barclay (Scarlets/WAL), John Hardie (Edinburgh), Rob Harley (Glasgow), Josh Strauss (Glasgow), Hamish Watson (Edinburgh), Ryan Wilson(Glasgow), Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh), Jonny Gray (Glasgow), Richie Gray (Toulouse/FRA), Tim Swinson (Glasgow), Ross Ford (Edinburgh), Fraser Brown (Glasgow), Stuart McInally (Edinburgh), Allan Dell (Edinburgh), Alasdair Dickinson (Edinburgh), Zander Fagerson (Glasgow), Moray Low (Exeter/ENG), Gordon Reid (Glasgow)