Russell exile ends as Scotland hammer Georgia in Wales warm-up

Edinburgh (AFP) –


Scotland overpowered Georgia 48-7 as Finn Russell's Test exile came to an end at Murrayfield on Friday.

The Scots ran in eight tries as they warmed-up for their coronavirus-delayed Six Nations finale away to Wales in Llanelli next week with a comfortable victory.

Fly-half Russell came off the bench for his first international since last year's World Cup with 25 minutes left and immediately gave Scotland's attack a fresh cutting edge with his crisp passing.

Fellow stand-off Adam Hastings stayed on the field during a match where he landed just four conversions.

Scotland captain Fraser Brown and wing Darcy Graham scored two tries apiece.

Hamish Watson, Stuart McInally, and debutant wing Duhan Van der Merwe also crossed Georgia's line before full-back Blair Kinghorn completed the rout late on.

Georgia wing Akaki Tabutsadze went over early in the second half for a converted try.

Georgia, often starved of matches against leading nations outside of World Cups, can now look forward to fixtures against England, Wales and Ireland next month as part of the new Autumn Nations Cup, which replaces the traditional international Test window during the pandemic.

Russell, a member of the Racing 92 side beaten in last week's European Champions Cup final by Exeter, did not feature during this year's Six Nations before it was halted by the coronavirus outbreak after he breached team discipline by going for a late night drink ahead of Scotland's opener with Ireland.

He later gave a newspaper interview in which he detailed the breakdown of his relationship with Scotland coach Gregor Townsend but the pair have now resolved their differences.