Scotland's Stuart Hogg available for Argentina test
Last Updated: 21/11/18 12:22pm
Stuart Hogg will be available to play for Scotland in their Test against Argentina at Murrayfield on Saturday, despite being forced off in last weekend's narrow defeat to South Africa.
The explosive full-back frequently threatened the Springbok line before he limped off after 63 minutes of the 26-20 defeat, sparking fears he might have aggravated an ankle injury that required surgery just two months ago.
Hogg had initially been ruled out for the November internationals but returned quicker than expected and was back to his best against South Africa.
"I just rolled my bad ankle, got it caught in a tackle. It was a little bit achy but nothing I haven't had before. I tried to hide for a while but then they kicked it straight to me," Hogg told reporters ahead of Scotland's final Test of the year.
"It's just an unfortunate thing that it got caught in a tackle with big (men) lying on top of me. These things happen, and I think if that hadn't happened I would have potentially played 80 minutes."
In total, Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend has made nine changes to the side that lost to South Africa on Saturday.
The most intriguing of those sees first-choice fly-half Finn Russell move to inside centre, with Adam Hastings playing at No 10.
Townsend will experiment with the dual playmakers against Argentina after the pair briefly featured together towards the end of the 54-17 win over Fiji at Murrayfield on November 10.
A new front row of Allan Dell, Fraser Brown and Simon Berghan will also start against the Pumas, while lock Grant Gilchrist is joined in a new-look pack by flanker Jamie Ritchie and No 8 Josh Strauss.
In the backs, Edinburgh full-back Blair Kinghorn is given the opportunity to impress on the right wing.
Scotland beat Argentina 44-15 in Resistencia over the summer and Townsend will be hoping for a similarly positive result in Edinburgh.
"While it was a great effort from the players to win in Argentina last summer, we are under no illusions as how different a prospect their team will be on Saturday," said Townsend.
"Under Mario Ledesma, Argentina delivered some outstanding performances and they were hugely impressive in their victories over South Africa and Australia in the recent Rugby Championship.
"I'm sure that they will throw everything at us to end their international season on a high note.
"With four Test matches in succession, we've been conscious of rotating the squad to enable as many players as possible to be in the best physical condition for each contest.
"We are expecting those selected this weekend to bring energy and huge effort to the game and seize the opportunity to perform at their best level against a very good team.
"It will be another huge challenge, not only for our forward pack, but also for our defence - as Argentina play ambitious, skilful and effective attacking rugby."
Scotland: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Sean Maitland, 13 Huw Jones, 12 Finn Russell, 11 Blair Kinghorn, 10 Adam Hastings, 9 Greig Laidlaw (captain); 1 Allan Dell, 2 Fraser Brown, 3 Simon Berghan, 4 Grant Gilchrist, 5 Jonny Gray, 6 Jamie Ritchie, 7 Hamish Watson, 8 Josh Strauss.
Replacements: 16 Stuart McInally, 17 Alex Allan, 18 WP Nel, 19 Sam Skinner, 20 Ryan Wilson, 21 George Horne, 22 Alex Dunbar, 23 Byron McGuigan.