6N: Brown pays for sin-bin, dropped by Scotland to reserves

EDINBURGH, Scotland (AP) Ross Ford was promoted to start at hooker for Scotland against Italy in the Six Nations on Saturday after Fraser Brown ruined their opening against England last weekend when he was yellow-carded in the second minute.

Brown was sin-binned for a tip tackle. When he came back on the field, Scotland was 10-0 down en route to a record 61-21 defeat at Twickenham.

Brown was spared punishment at a disciplinary hearing on Tuesday but paid for his mistake by being dropped to the reserves on Thursday.

Ford makes his first start of the championship, and earns his 107th cap, two shy of the national record.

The only other change was in the reserves, where centre Matt Scott was in for the injured Mark Bennett.

After all the injuries against England, Stuart Hogg, Tommy Seymour and Ryan Wilson were passed fit after head knocks, and Finn Russell, Huw Jones and Richie Gray were available.

Even though England destroyed Scotland’s title ambition, the latter can potentially finish second, its best championship result in 18 years.

The match marks the last outing as coach for Vern Cotter, who began in the job in 2014 and transformed the side. The New Zealander’s contract was not renewed so a native could take over, Gregor Townsend.

Scotland: Stuart Hogg, Tommy Seymour, Huw Jones, Alex Dunbar, Tim Visser, Finn Russell, Alistair Price; Ryan Wilson, Hamish Watson, John Barclay (captain), Jonny Gray, Richie Gray, Zander Fagerson, Ross Ford, Gordon Reid. Reserves: Fraser Brown, Allan Dell, Simon Berghan, Tim Swinson, Cornell du Preez, Henry Pyrgos, Duncan Weir, Matt Scott.