Having started the season as fourth choice at Edinburgh Darryl Marfo will make his Scotland debut in the capital tomorrow as one of four uncapped players in head coach Gregor Townsend’s first squad for a home Test match.

Marfo is the only one of the quartet in the starting XV, with fellow loosehead prop Jamie Bhatti and his Glasgow Warriors colleague George Turner joined on the bench by Newcastle Falcons back Chris Harris.

The London-born 27-year-old was seen as little more than cover for the injured Ali Dickinson and Alan Dell when he was signed from Bath in the summer but has seized his opportunity at club level and is Scottish qualified because his mother was born in Ayrshire.

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Townsend admitted that Marfo had not been a contender at the beginning of the season, but said he had been impressed by his performances in an Edinburgh team that has won all bar two of 10 matches this season and the last five in succession.

“We didn’t know much about him,” he said.

“We watched Edinburgh train, he started in the first pre-season game and we started to take more notice of him after that. He’s got his opportunity at Edinburgh and part of that is injuries, but also he’s played ahead of other players we were looking at.

“He’s shown consistency, and we believe he’s getting better and better. We’re very impressed with how he played against Leinster away. Two (British & Irish) Lions were in the Leinster front row that night.”

The coach cited the selection of the two uncapped loosehead props as evidence that players were being selected on form.

“They’ve been playing very well for Edinburgh and Glasgow and they’ve fitted in really well with our game plan. They’ve earned their places in the squad,” he said.

Looking ahead to tomorrow’s encounter Townsend, who had a spell as Scotland’s attack coach under Frank Hadden and Andy Robinson, meanwhile sought to play down any personal significance 14 years after he played his last Test match at Murrayfield, but he did accept that it is likely to be a different experience to that on tour when he took charge of the Scotland team for the first time in the summer.

“I did want to go into coaching, but I never thought I’d be standing here today in charge of a team about to play at Murrayfield,” he said.

“For the players being at Murrayfield having played on tour is a boost. You are playing when 95 percent of people are behind you.

“As coaches we had six weeks with the group in the summer and now two weeks, you just look at the work you are doing, the game is really for the players.”