Scots to go Dutch for Christmas
By Iain Morrison
December 10, 1999
Scotland 'A' take on Holland on the 21st December which should keep the run up to Christmas relatively quiet for those concerned. Scotland's new coach Ian McGeechan stated that, "this game was always planned to give those who didn't play in the RWC a run out. We'd hoped originally to play one of the home unions but then Holland approached us in September".
The game also has the happy coincidence of coming just under the wire as far as Bristol prop Paul Johnston is concerned. "Johno" is Zimbabwean by birth and boasts 35 caps for the African State. However he also qualifies for Scotland and needs to play for his adopted country either in a full, or an A game before the year-end or an IRB rule change will mean he must either resume his Zimbabwe career of forfeit international rugby altogether.
A phone call from the Bristol coach Bob Dwyer has persuaded the Scottish selectors to give Johnston that opportunity and he will play the Holland match, conveniently arranged ahead of year-end. Although the Scots are well served by loose-head props such is the current form of the Bristol number one that it would have been foolish not played him before the change of rules will prevent players from having to learn more than one national anthem.