Six Nations 2012: Wales cast doubt over Steven Shingler

Scotland defend Shingler's call-up to Six Nations squad despite doubt from Wales

The Scottish Rugby Union have defended the selection of Steven Shingler in the Scotland RBS 6 Nations squad after their Welsh counterparts questioned his eligibility.

The 20-year-old Swansea-born, London Irish fly-half or centre was named as one of six uncapped players in Scotland head coach Andy Robinson's 36-man squad as preparations for the February 4 Calcutta Cup clash with England at Murrayfield began in earnest.

National service: Steven Shingler is in Andy Robinson's Scotland squad

National service: Steven Shingler was named in Andy Robinson's Scotland squad

Scotland squad for Six Nations

Backs: J Ansbro (London Irish), M Blair (Edinburgh), C Cusiter (Glasgow Warriors),
S Danielli (Ulster), N De Luca (Edinburgh),
M Evans (Castres), S Hogg, R Jackson (both Glasgow Warriors), L Jones, G Laidlaw (both Edinburgh), R Lamont (Glasgow Warriors),
S Lamont (Scarlets), R Lawson (Gloucester),
G Morrison (Glasgow Warriors), D Parks (Cardiff Blues), S Shingler (London Irish),
D Weir (Glasgow Warriors)

Forwards: J Barclay (Glasgow Warriors),
K Brown (Saracens), G Cross, D Denton (both Edinburgh Rugby), A Dickinson (Sale Sharks), R Ford (Edinburgh Rugby), R Gray, D Hall (both Glasgow Warriors), J Hamilton (Gloucester), R Harley (Glasgow Warriors),
A Jacobsen (Edinburgh), A Kellock (Glasgow Warriors), S Lawson (Gloucester), M Low (Glasgow Warriors), F McKenzie (Sale Sharks), E Murray (Newcastle Falcons), R Rennie (Edinburgh Rugby), A Strokosch (Gloucester) and R Vernon (Sale Sharks)

However, the final say in whether
Shingler will be permitted to play for Scotland is now set to come from
the International Rugby Board after a row over his eligibility.

Shingler played at full-back for
Wales under-20s against France under-20s in the 2011 Six Nations, when
both nations declared the age-group squads as their second XVs,
effectively handcuffing the players involved to those nations.

The Welsh Rugby Union said in a
statement: 'All the U20 players who represented Wales against France at
U20 level in 2011 were informed that they would then become
Wales-qualified players only at senior level.'

However, Scotland, who believe
Shingler qualifies as a result of his Dumfries-born mother, have been
assured by the player he kept his eligibility open by refusing to
confirm his future would lie with Wales.

Called up: David Denton is back in the Scotland squad for the Six Nations

Called up: David Denton is back in the Scotland squad for the Six Nations

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The SRU responded in a statement,
which read: 'Steven has confirmed to Scottish Rugby that he declined to
sign a declaration from the WRU that he was committed solely to
representing Wales at senior level.

'Steven
has informed us that he made it clear that he wished to leave open his
international eligibility as he was also eligible to represent Scotland
and England as well as Wales.

'Scottish Rugby believes we have
acted in good faith in this matter and have also taken cognisance of an
IRB ruling last year concerning two players who played for Wales
under-20 against France under-20 in 2010 who now play for Connacht and
are eligible for Ireland. We are liaising with the IRB on this matter.'

The SRU were referring to a ruling
relating to Matthew Jarvis and James Loxton in which a precedent may
have been set allowing Shingler to feature for Scotland.