SCOTLAND go into their final game before the Six Nations today without key forward Jade Konkel, but head coach Shade Munro remains hopeful the Harlequins player will be available for the start of the Championship next month.

Munro has made three changes to his starting line-up for the game against Spain in Madrid, and is looking for another morale-boosting performance after his team, ranked 11th in the world, came within a score of beating fourth-ranked Canada in November.

That 28-25 defeat at Scotstoun followed a 38-0 loss to the Italians, and Munro hopes his team will continue to show they have learned the lessons of that humiliating result in Calvisano.

“Performing as poorly as we did against Italy had a huge positive effect against Canada,” he said. “It certainly changed the mentality of the team going into that game.

“But we don’t want to approach the Spanish game thinking that everything’s sorted because we played quite well against Canada. It’s about challenging the players to replicate that.

“Our emphasis in training has been on hard ball carrying, speed to the breakdown and the ambition to play rugby on the front foot. We didn’t do that against Italy, but against Canada we did.”

Annabel Sergeant replaces Abi Evans on the left wing, outside centre Hannah Smith returns in a back-division reshuffle that sees stand-off Lisa Martin drop to the bench, and Louise McMillan takes over from Konkel in a recast back row. On the bench, forwards Sophie Anderson and Lucy Minty feature in a national squad for the first time.

“Jade was injured playing for Harlequins last week. She has a leg strain of some sort and is being monitored by their physios,” the coach added. “I expect I’ll find out next week what the state of play is.”

Scotland (v Spain in Madrid, Sunday 11.30am GMT, live on Chloe Rollie (Lille); Lauren Harris (Bristol), Hannah Smith (Hillhead/Jordanhill) Lisa Thomson (Darlington, captain), Annabel Sergeant (Heriot’s); Helen Nelson (Montpellier), Mhairi Grieve (Firwood Waterloo); Lisa Cockburn (Darlington), Lana Skeldon (Watsonians), Megan Kennedy (Stirling County), Emma Wassell (Heriot’s), Nicola Howat (Edinburgh University), Louise McMillan (Hillhead/Jordanhill), Rachel McLachlan (Stirling County), Siobhan Cattigan (Stirling County). Substitutes: Jodie Rettie (Saracens), Mairi Forsyth (Stirling County), Lucy Minty (Heriot’s), Sophie Anderson (Hillhead/Jordanhill), Lucy Winter (Edinburgh University), Jenny Maxwell (Loughborough Lightning), Lisa Martin (Lille), Abi Evans (Hillhead/Jordanhill).