Ford to hit Test century against Wallabies

by AFP

Hooker Ross Ford will win his 100th cap for Scotland when he lines-up for Saturday's rugby union Test with World Cup finalists Australia.

The 32-year-old -- who made his debut back in 2004 -- is just the third Scottish player to reach the landmark, record cap holder Chris Paterson (109) and Sean Lamont (105) being the others.

"Congratulations first to Ross Ford on reaching this special milestone," commented Scotland coach Vern Cotter.

"It's fantastic for him and his family that he'll achieve it in front of the home fans at Murrayfield, who I'm sure will give him a great reception.

"To play 100 Test matches for your country is an incredible achievement, with his lasting dedication keeping him among the best hookers in the world for a decade.

"He is a consummate professional and, at 32, he has plenty left to give in a Scotland jersey."

Ford, who is also a British and Irish Lion having gone on the 2009 tour of South Africa, will require all his experience as his two props are the once-capped 20-year-old Zander Fagerson and the debutant Allan Dell.

Fagerson is one of three players being blooded for the first time by Cotter with back row forward Hamish Watson and centre Huw Jones, who plays for South African Super Rugby franchise Stormers, the other two. 

Zander Fargerson will be part of a rookie front row. Photo: Getty ImagesThe match -- the first time they have met since the controversial World Cup quarter-final last year which Australia won with a last minute penalty that shouldn't have been awarded -- looks set to better the previous best attendance (64,120 in 2006) for a Test between the two teams at Murrayfield.

"It's been eight months since we last played at home so the players are desperate to get out there and put in another winning performance in front of our home support," said Cotter, who will step down from his role at the end of the Six Nations to be replaced by Gregor Townsend.

"We've prepared well over the past couple of weeks in camp, with the players working hard technically and tactically for what will undoubtedly be a tough Test match against one of the world's top teams.

"We must not relent in our pursuit of success and to do the Scottish people proud."

Scotland Team

1. Allan Dell

2. Ross Ford

3. Zander Fagerson

4. Richie Gray

5. Jonny Gray

6. John Barclay

7. Hamish Watson

8. Ryan Wilson

9. Greig Laidlaw

10. Finn Russell

11. Tim Visser

12. Alex Dunbar

13. Huw Jones

14. Sean Maitland

15. Stuart Hogg


16. Fraser Brown

17. Gordon Reid

18. Moray Low

19. Grant Gilchrist

20. John Hardie

21. Ali Price

22. Pete Horne

23. Rory Hughes

All of the Wallabies’ Spring Tour Tests will be broadcast LIVE on beIn Sports and streamed LIVE on Foxtel Go (for Foxtel subscribers).