Kyle Steyn may one day prove to be a fine Test player, but the rapidity of the relative unknown’s elevation into the national squad raises questions about the proneness of Scottish players to injury, but also about the domestic development of players.

A lack of strength in depth has been exposed in the course of what has been an injury-blighted campaign, albeit Mike Blair, the Scotland team’s assistant coach, suggested yesterday that the casualty rate was just down to ill fortune rather than any problem in terms of the way players are being prepared for the rigours of international rugby.

“There are some big hits going on,” he observed, yesterday. “I spoke to the Welsh physio and they said that this was the game which produced the most lacerations and big hits that they’ve had to deal with. There’s no doubt that the game is producing these kinds of injuries. I don’t know whether you put it down to being unlucky or what it is, but we’ve had our fair share of injuries so hopefully that means we’ve had all we are going to have for a while.”

With only 23 players available on a match day the way Scotland ran out of back three and back-row players against Wales on Saturday could be seen in that light. However what speaks to a bigger problem is the invitation extended to Steyn to join the camp at Scotland’s Oriam training base, less than a month after he was unveiled as a full-time professional player and expressed excitement at the prospect of facing Connacht, while seeking to “carry on the legacy that’s been there before me,” in relation to Glasgow Warriors.

South African born-and-bred, there should not be the slightest quibble about the right of a player whose mother is Scottish to pull on a navy blue jersey, as he has already done on the sevens circuit. This, though, is a 25-year-old was not playing at Super Rugby, but was recruited by Scotland’s sevens management from Currie Cup team the Griquas and who will not be on Glasgow’s books full-time until next season, albeit he has played in their last three matches. Whereas Rassie Erasmus, head coach of Springboks, told us earlier this season that he was pleased for compatriots who get opportunities in other countries because they have too much talent to accommodate, with some 500 South Africans on full-time professional contracts elsewhere in the world, Scotland have only 62 realistic candidates from which to select their 31-man World Cup squad.

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Of that group only 13 - Finn Russell, Mark Bennett, Matt Scott, Alex Dunbar, Rob Harley, Adam Ashe, Dougie Fife, Rory Hughes, Gordon Reid, Jamie Bhatti, Grant Stewart, Luke Crosbie and Matt Smith - are homegrown players who have been drawn from outwith the two communities on which Scottish rugby has traditionally relied - private schools and the Borders - with the rest of the country effectively neglected in terms of talent development.

Ironically the only member of that group who looks certain to head to Japan is Russell, whose father Keith won an unfair dismissal case against Scottish Rugby last year after being forced our of his job as director of domestic rugby. Russell sr has since taken charge at Badminton Scotland where he declared his main goal as being to make it the country's biggest participation sport.

Close to a quarter of a century since the sport went open, that speaks to the failure of administrators and large teams of development officers to develop players domestically, with attention and resources instead apparently focused on short-term fixes by recruiting players who have not made it at elite level in their homelands, but are Scottish qualified.