BLAIR Kinghorn’s ascent from raw rookie to established international has been so swift that it now seems hard to believe that his first involvement with the Scotland team was a mere eight months ago. Even then, he was no more than an observer, taken to Cardiff as cover without even getting a seat on the bench.

That first Six Nations game of the season was a traumatic one for Gregor Townsend’s side as Wales strolled to a 34-7 win, but as a non-combatant Kinghorn has less troubled memories of the occasion, and is looking forward to returning to the Principality Stadium on Saturday.

“I was there as 24th man,” he recalled during last week’s Scotland training camp in St Andrews. “I was rooming with Henry Pyrgos, who was the 25th man.

“It was a brilliant experience, my first taste of being 24th man in an away game. Obviously it was a really disappointing result, but a good experience to be in with the team, doing the warm-up, and seeing what it’s like on matchday in an international set-up.

“Once the roof’s shut, it’s a pretty intimidating place to go. It’s a great stadium, the noise is unbelievable and the atmosphere is brilliant. It’s places like that you want to go and play rugby. At the Principality, you try to talk to people in the warm-up and you can’t really hear them. It’s a brilliant atmosphere, they always get a great crowd in there and the noise is always right at the top.”

With Glasgow’s Stuart Hogg recovering from ankle surgery, Kinghorn seems sure to start at full-back and win his sixth cap. As the match is being played outside of the international window, only Warriors and Edinburgh players will be available to Townsend, meaning the starting line-up should be along the lines of:

Kinghorn; Tommy Seymour, Huw Jones, Alex Dunbar, Lee Jones; Adam Hastings, Ali Price; Allan Dell, Stuart McInally, WP Nel, Jonny Gray, Grant Gilchrist, Ryan Wilson, Hamish Watson, Matt Fagerson.

Whatever team is selected, however, the task will be clear: to perform with both more composure and greater dynamism than Scotland did in February.

“It wasn’t the result we were looking for,” Kinghorn added when asked about that game. “We had a hard look at it, reviewed it and realised we just didn’t play the way we wanted to play. We’re looking to put the wrongs right when we go down there now.”