JOHN Long is best known in Scottish rugby as Edinburgh Wanderers'

Irishman who was the instigator of the Saltires, the touring rugby club

whose jersey, inevitably, is dark blue with a white St Andrew's Cross.

In his time, too, he has been connnected with rugby in Wales and the

Gulf, and he has turned up here in Edinburgh this week in yet another

guise. Romania have brought him along as technical coaching adviser for

the Rugby World Cup Sevens at Murrayfield at the weekend.

It is yet another chapter in the globetrotting tale of a descendant of

Robert Louis Stevenson, and to cut short a Long story, ''Jonty'' is now

based in Bucharest as Shell's retail manager in Romania. Being the rugby

fanactic that he is, he was not long in developing connections in the

Romanian game.

Word of his seven-a-side nous with the Saltires soon filtered through

to the national rugby federation, and when Romania received the

invitation to the Murrayfield tournament they turned to Long for advice.

As he himself explained, Romanian rugby is still in crisis after the

coup d'etat three years ago, and their sevens knowledge was limited to

only the occasional appearance in the Hong Kong tournament. Yet they

wanted to do well at Murrayfield. ''They've got to put in a good effort

to do their country proud,'' Long remarked.

His plan was to call 50 club coaches from throughout Romania to

Bucharest, so that he could explain by word and video what was needed

for seven-a-side rugby. The coaches then went back to their clubs to

produce players for the national team.

''We're making the quantum leap from club 15-a-sides to international

sevens,'' Long explained. ''But our goal is to be in the top 10 at

Murrayfield.'' To do that they have to beat at least four of their five

pool opponents -- Latvia, Japan, Wales, South Africa, and Fiji. A tall


Long has found a squad whom he believes to have the necessary

qualities, with speed and ball skills. ''It is significant that the

average age is 22 or 23,'' he commented. ''These boys will be around for

a long time.''

Measuring how far Romania have come in a short time under Long's

diktat, they picked up a trophy in the Hong Kong tournament last month,

retaining the bowl in the third tier competition.

In earlier ties they were beaten by both Scotland and Tonga, but Long

had a warning for the opposition in that Romania have a stronger squad

than they had in Hong Kong. They have added three players who were

unavailable because of a FIRA championship international against


As a guide for tomorrow and the next two days, Long suggested that

Murrayfield spectators should look out especially for four Romanian

players -- Daniel Neaga at scrum half, Adrian Mitrocaru at centre,

Catalin Sasu, and Bogdan Serban.

Sasu and Serban are speedy wings, though Long was reluctant to say too

much about where they will play in the seven. He wanted to keep a

surprise up a sleeve for Romania's opening tie against Wales.

RAY Megson, Edinburgh Wanderers' international referee, has been given

two potentially crucial ties in the Rugby World Cup Sevens at

Murrayfield on Saturday. He has the Pool A match between Fiji and Wales

as well as the Group B game in which New Zealand are to meet France.

Tomorrow the Scot will do two of Latvia's three Pool A games -- those

against Romania and South Africa -- as well as the Group B match between

France and Ireland.

Derek Bevan, the 1991 World Cup referee from Wales, will have charge

of two of Scotland's pool matches. He will referee the game against

Taiwan, the last of tomorrow's 30 games, and he will do the tie against

Australia on Saturday.

New Zealand's Colin Hawke has Scotland's opening match against Tonga

on Friday afternoon. Scots, however, do not have favourable memories of

him as he was severely criticised by David Sole after the second Test

against Australia last year.

An Irishman and a Japan referee have been allocated Scotland's two

other matches -- Owen Doyle for the game against Argentina, and Naoki

Saito for the tie against Italy.