|Rugby World Cup 2019 Pool A: Scotland v Samoa|
|Venue: Misaki Stadium, Kobe Date: Monday, 30 September Kick-off: 11:15 BST|
|Coverage: Full commentary on BBC Radio 5 live and Radio Scotland, plus text updates on the BBC Sport website and app|
Scotland make five changes for Monday’s must-win World Cup meeting with Samoa.
A completely reshaped back-row has Magnus Bradbury at blindside flanker, Jamie Ritchie at openside and Blade Thomson at number eight.
John Barclay drops out of the match-day squad, with Ryan Wilson on the bench and Hamish Watson already home with a knee injury.
Chris Harris replaces Duncan Taylor at outside centre, with Darcy Graham in for Tommy Seymour on the right wing.
Greig Laidlaw and Finn Russell will equal the record set by Roy Laidlaw and John Rutherford of 35 starts together at half-back.
Zander Fagerson, George Horne and Adam Hastings are added to the replacements after missing a dismal opening defeat to Ireland last weekend.
Ritchie also sat out of the 27-3 loss, having sustained a facial injury in the final warm-up Test against Georgia, while Bradbury travelled as cover for his Edinburgh team-mate and was added to the squad following Watson’s early exit.
Horne takes over as scrum-half Laidlaw’s deputy after Scotland also lost Ali Price to injury.
‘We need to be much better’
“The reality is we now have to win our next three games to make it out of our pool, so the knockout stages for us begin this Monday night,” said head coach Gregor Townsend. “I firmly believe this group are ready to take on that challenge.
“We had worked hard in our build-up this tournament to deliver our best rugby but we were well below this level in our opening game against Ireland. We’ll need to be much better against such a dangerous opponent.
“It’s been a long week building towards a game where we intend to put a lot of things right. The players have responded well in training, know what is required of them and are hungry to deliver the kind of performance that keeps us in the World Cup.”
‘A sharp axe falling on the older guard’ – analysis
Tom English, BBC Scotland in Japan
A big statement has been made here by Townsend. Eight changes to the squad of 23 represents a sharp axe falling on the older guard. Barclay was the Scotland captain in 2017 and 2018 and Wilson led the side in their last warm-up game before flying to Japan, a home Test against Georgia. Both were over-powered and ineffective against Ireland.
Seymour is another senior player who has been jettisoned in place of young Graham, whose try-scoring record in international rugby is quite something. Graham has claimed five tries in his seven Tests so far. Seymour looked a shadow of his former self in Yokohama.
Harris, whose speciality is physicality, replaces Taylor, a terrific player who is clearly still finding his feet after missing two years in the Scotland jersey through a succession of unfortunate injuries.
Townsend had two options in terms of reacting to that loss – give the bulk of the team a chance to redeem themselves or tear it up and start again. He’s gone with the latter.
Scotland: Hogg; Graham, Harris, Johnson, Maitland; Russell, Laidlaw; Dell, McInally, Nel, Gilchrist, Gray, Bradbury, Ritchie, Thomson.
Replacements: Brown, Reid, Fagerson, Cummings, Wilson, Horne, Hastings, Taylor.