Scotland, Premiership clubs in payment row

Tue, 25 Oct 2016 13:06
Large greig laidlaw scotland talks 800

REACTION: 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.

Even 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 hopes scrumhalf 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.

Agence France-Presse