Finn Russell dropped for Scotland's trip to Ireland as Blair Kinghorn starts

Blair Kinghorn in action for Scotland against Wales in 2020 Six Nations Blair Kinghorn will start at fly-half for Scotland (David Davies/PA)

Scotland talisman Finn Russell has been dropped to the bench for this Saturday’s Six Nations showdown with Ireland in Dublin.

Edinburgh’s Blair Kinghorn takes the place of the highly-regarded Racing 92 stand-off, whose performances in this year’s tournament have been the subject of scrutiny from some critics.

The omission of Russell, who is named among the replacements, is particularly notable since head coach Gregor Townsend has made only two changes to the side that started last weekend’s bonus-point victory away to Italy.

The other alteration is in the second-row, where Jonny Gray, who has missed the last two games through injury, returns in place of his Exeter colleague Sam Skinner, who drops to the bench.

London Irish’s Ben White and Glasgow’s Fraser Brown are both listed among the replacements as the Scots bid to pull off an upset and finish their campaign with three wins from five matches.

Scotland team to play Ireland

Forwards: 1 Pierre Schoeman (Edinburgh Rugby), 2 George Turner (Glasgow Warriors), 3 Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors), 4 Jonny Gray (Exeter Chiefs), 5 Grant Gilchrist (Edinburgh Rugby), 6 Rory Darge (Glasgow Warriors), 7 Hamish Watson (Edinburgh Rugby), 8 Matt Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors)

Backs: 9 Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors), 10 Blair Kinghorn (Edinburgh Rugby), 11 Kyle Steyn (Glasgow Warriors), 12 Sam Johnson (Glasgow Warriors), 13 Chris Harris (Gloucester Rugby), 14 Darcy Graham (Edinburgh Rugby), 15 Stuart Hogg (CAPTAIN, Exeter Chiefs)

Replacements: 16 Fraser Brown (Glasgow Warriors), 17 Allan Dell (London Irish), 18 WP Nel (Edinburgh Rugby), 19 Sam Skinner (Exeter Chiefs), 20 Josh Bayliss (Bath Rugby), 21 Ben White (London Irish), 22 Finn Russell (Racing 92), 23 Mark Bennett (Edinburgh Rugby)

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