There will be divided loyalties in Vern Cotter's close family during this afternoon's Six Nations clash at Murrayfield following the Scotland coach's revelation that his sister-in-law is Welsh.

New Zealander Cotter admitted to the hitherto unknown connection as he finalised his side's preparations to take on Wales in the Edinburgh stadium today. Sharon Cotter was born and grew up in Wales - Welsh is her first language - and was a successful singer and actress, but she moved to New Zealand almost 20 years ago after meeting and marrying Cotter's brother Jeremy.

Since then, she has continued her singing career in her adopted country. In June 2010, she was asked to sing the Welsh national anthem ahead of their clash with the All Blacks in the city of Hamilton, 50 miles south of Auckland.

Cotter is seeking to guide the Scots to a first win over Wales since 2007. Both teams lost on the championship's opening weekend, but although Scotland earned plaudits in defeat Cotter suggested that recent history favours the Welsh, and that Wales coach Warren Gatland will not want to change his winning formula, which has relied on the power and pace of the backline.

"He'll be looking at the success they've had against Scotland over the past few years and be doing the same only harder and faster," said Cotter. "They will still be playing with the same intrinsic values so they will be playing with Jamie Roberts, they will be playing with Cuthbert coming off his wing.

"I think [fly-half] Dan Bigger has good vision in the game. He'll be looking for his forward pack to become more aggressive than they were last week."

After watching Wales struggle in the set-piece as they lost 21-16 to England in Cardiff nine days ago, Cotter hinted that his Scottish forwards could well have the edge in that area as well.

"England became better at getting over the gain line. They increased the pressure at the scrum and line-out and beat them at the fundamentals, although a lot of the things they did were pretty smart as well. We will be looking to apply pressure on those areas where England got success.

"England managed to dominate them in the second half by making some changes and, more importantly, by having a dominant scrum and a dominant line-out. So those are things we are looking at as well.

"Luckily there is no game next week, so we will throw everything into the battle and see how we get on. I think that our players acknowledge that they came off second best in a couple of contests last week. I think it's important that we look at those and we try and perform better."

Bizarrely, today's game throws up another unlikely Cotter connection as he used to coach the match referee, Glen Jackson, at the Bay of Plenty province in New Zealand. Jackson, 39, who went on to play for Saracens, has been fast-tracked through the New Zealand refereeing system, but Cotter does not expect any favours from his former charge.