Barclay blow for Scots

Mon, 18 Jun 2012 12:14

Scotland No.8 John Barclay will miss the Test against Samoa this weekend as he has had to return home to get married.

The 25-year-old Glasgow Warriors loose forward overcame a stomach bug to start in Scotland's 37-25 victory over Fiji on Saturday, but he will take no further part in the tour as Scotland look to make it a clean sweep this weekend.

Barclay recovered from a hand injury to play a significant role alongside Alasdair Strokosch and Ross Rennie in Scotland’s historic victory over Australia in Newcastle, before playing for the opening 50 minutes against Fiji, but he will be back in Inverness this weekend as he prepares to tie the know with his fiancée Hayley.

Scotland coach Andy Robinson explained: "I agreed beforehand that John could go home at this point in the tour.  For him to play this coming Saturday with a risk of injury and being in Samoa with the travel logistics of that I made the decision."

Barclay's departure to ensure his nuptials go off without a hitch adds spice to the back row selection for Saturday's match at Apia Park.

Richie Vernon was convincing off the bench against Fiji but he could face competition from Stuart McInally, the Edinburgh forward and former Scotland age-grade captain, who arrived on the tour to provide injury cover for Barclay.

Then there is also Robert Harley, who has been on the fringe of Scotland selection for the last two years and who hugely impressed Robinson by his attitude and application as part of the extended Scotland squad for last year's World Cup.

In the backline Robinson confirmed that Joe Ansbro will be available for selection having recovered from the headwound he sustained in the accidental clash with Strokosch at the end of the win against the Wallabies.