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Stuart Hogg: Exeter Chiefs full-back to captain Scotland in Six Nations

Stuart Hogg succeeds Stuart McInally as Scotland skipper for the Six NationsGuinness Six NationsDates: 1 February-14 MarchCoverage: Watch live coverage on BBC TV, BBC iPlayer, Connected TVs and online; listen to match commentaries, shows and podcasts on BBC Radio 5 live, sports extra and BBC Sounds; follow text updates on the BBC Sport website and mobile app.

Stuart Hogg is the new Scotland captain after head coach Gregor Townsend named his squad for this year’s Six Nations.

The 27-year-old Exeter Chiefs full-back replaces Edinburgh’s Stuart McInally, who skippered the national side during last year’s disappointing Rugby World Cup campaign.

Six uncapped players are included in Townsend’s 38-man squad.

“He’s a really intelligent rugby player who is learning and improving with every season,” Townsend said of Hogg.

“He really wanted to take on the honour and responsibility of being captain, which was a huge positive.

“And – having heard his plans for how he would work as a captain and work to bring the best out of others, while being able to focus on his own game – meant it became a relatively straightforward decision.”

Hogg’s sole game as skipper came in a loss to the USA in June 2018, but he has been vice-captain several times since and the 72-cap star is the most experienced player in the squad following the retirement of former skippers Greig Laidlaw and John Barclay.

Glasgow Warriors trio Tom Gordon, Kyle Steynand and Ratu Tagive, plus Edinburgh duo Luke Crosbie and Nick Haining and Gloucester’s Alex Craig, are the uncapped players called up for the tournament, which Scotland begin away to Ireland on 1 February.

Centres Huw Jones and Rory Hutchinson are recalled after missing out on the World Cup. Edinburgh centre Matt Scott returns after a two-and-a-half year absence and club-mate Rory Sutherland is back more than three-and-a-half years after his last cap.

“We’ve put a bigger emphasis on form as a guide for our selection, with those picked backed to go out and grab their opportunity,” Townsend added.

Scotland’s Six Nations squad

Forwards: Simon Berghan, Jamie Bhatti, Magnus Bradbury, Fraser Brown, Alex Craig, Luke Crosbie, Scott Cummings, Allan Dell, Cornell du Preez, Zander Fagerson, Grant Gilchrist, Jonny Gray, Tom Gordon, Nick Haining, Stuart McInally, Willem Nel, Jamie Ritchie, Rory Sutherland, Ben Toolis, George Turner, Hamish Watson.

Backs: Darcy Graham, Chris Harris, Adam Hastings, Stuart Hogg (c), George Horne, Rory Hutchinson, Sam Johnson, Huw Jones, Blair Kinghorn, Sean Maitland, Matt Scott, Byron McGuigan, Ali Price, Henry Pyrgos, Finn Russell, Kyle Stern, Ratu Tagive.

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