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Russell “must put Scotland first” to earn a withdrawal after driving over alcohol ban, coach Townsend warns.

“These standards do not change for one player”: Finn Russell must put Scotland first to earn Six Nations recall, insists that Gregor Townsend after the star man argued with teammates about a drinking ban

  • Townsend said team leaders decided to ban alcohol after the game in Ireland
  • Russell left the team hotel after a disagreement with his teammates
  • Scotland’s coach said fly-half missed training and meetings the next day
  • Russell was dropped from the clash of Ireland and left out for England’s defeat

Scotland’s included fly-half Finn Russell was told by coach Gregor Townsend that he had to put the “best interests of the team” first if he wanted to return to the side.

Russell, 27, was dropped from the Six Nations opener of Scotland against Ireland for disciplinary reasons and was subsequently left out for England’s defeat of the Calcutta Cup.

“Players must conform to the high standards of being involved in team sport at an elite level,” Townsend said in a statement.

Scotland coach Gregor Townsend (left) has left the door open for Finn Russell (right)

Scotland coach Gregor Townsend (left) has left the door open for Finn Russell (right)

“These standards do not change for one player. What is important is that you commit to what has been agreed and put the best interests of the team first.

“The door is open to any player with the required skill level.

“However, he stated on the weekend that everything else needs to change to come back instead of accepting and adhering to the standards currently being observed by the group.”

Scotland has lost the opening of two games in 2020 Six Nations against Ireland and England

Scotland has lost the opening of two games in 2020 Six Nations against Ireland and England

Scotland has lost the opening of two games in 2020 Six Nations against Ireland and England

Townsend said that team leaders decided that after the first game there would be no more drinking, but that Russell was not prepared to follow the protocol.

“Finn left the camp on Sunday evening because of a disagreement on alcohol with fellow players and chose to miss the next day’s training and meetings,” Townsend said.

Scotland received another blow with closing Jonny Gray closed the rest of the tournament with a hand injury.

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