Published on September 30th, 2023
Scotland is gearing up to face Romania this Saturday as they aim to secure a path to the quarter-finals in their final Rugby World Cup pool match against Ireland.
Gregor Townsend’s team currently holds the third position in Pool B with five points, and the expectation is to achieve a bonus point victory against a struggling Romanian team.
The Oaks find themselves at the bottom of Pool B with zero points, having suffered an 82-8 defeat to Ireland and a brutal 76-0 loss to South Africa. Furthermore, they have lost a couple of key players ahead of their third match.
Given that points difference could prove decisive in a three-way battle for a place in the last eight, Scotland is determined to secure a significant victory of their own.
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When Is Scotland vs Romania Match?
The kick-off is set for 8:00 PM BST on Saturday, September 30th, at Stade Pierre Mauroy in Lille. Here are the corresponding times in different time zones:
- US Eastern Time (ET): 3:00 PM on Saturday, September 30th.
- Indian Standard Time (IST): 12:30 AM on Sunday, October 1st.
- Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST): 5:00 AM on Sunday, October 1st.
How Can I Watch Scotland vs Romania Match?
For those in the United Kingdom, the match will be broadcasted live on ITV1, with coverage commencing at 7:15 PM BST. Registered users can also access the match online for free on ITVX.
If you happen to be traveling abroad and wish to tune in to the event, you may require a VPN to bypass streaming restrictions.
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Gregor Townsend has implemented extensive changes to his team for the upcoming match against Romania, departing significantly from the lineup that secured a 45-17 victory over Tonga in the previous round.
Chris Harris and Kyle Steyn are the only returning starters. In light of Jamie Ritchie’s failed head injury assessment, Grant Gilchrist will assume the role of captain and take his place in the second row alongside Sam Skinner, who came off the bench in the last weekend’s encounter with Tonga.
Within the team, both Chris Harris, playing at center, and Hamish Watson, who operates as an openside flanker, have been appointed vice-captains. Joining Watson in the back row are blindside flanker Luke Crosbie and number eight Matt Fagerson.
The front row comprises Jamie Bhatti as loosehead prop, Ewan Ashman as hooker, and Javan Sebastian, making his debut in the Rugby World Cup with his first test start at tighthead.
The midfield partnership will feature Harris alongside Cameron Redpath, while the wing positions will be fortified by Darcy Graham and Kyle Steyn, with Ollie Smith taking up the fullback role.
In the halfback positions, Ben Healy will start at fly-half, while Ali Price is named as the scrum-half.
On the bench, uncapped hooker Johnny Matthews is poised to make his Scotland debut, having been called up to replace Stuart McInally, who left the squad due to a neck injury.
Matthews is joined by Rory Sutherland, WP Nel, Scott Cummings, Rory Darge, George Horne, Blair Kinghorn, and Huw Jones on the bench.
Notably, alongside Javan Sebastian, four other players are making their first appearance at RWC2023 (Bhatti, Crosbie, Watson, and Healy).
Romania, on the other hand, is facing a considerable challenge with only five players from their previous match against South Africa retaining their starting positions in the game against Scotland in Lille.
Head coach Eugen Apjok has had to adapt to multiple changes, notably shifting regular scrum half Alin Conache to the fly-half position due to a tournament-ending injury to Hinckley Vaovasa, who normally plays as a fullback but had been occupying the fly-half role at this World Cup.
Further adjustments in Apjok’s squad include the replacements of Gabriel Pop and Taylor Gontineac.
This has prompted changes in various positions, with Tongan-born wings Taliauli Sikuea and Sioeli Lama poised for their first World Cup appearances in the back three.
However, Florin Surugiu provides a touch of experience among the replacements, with the 39-year-old replacement scrum half set to celebrate his birthday in December.
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