Rugby World Cup 2015: Scotland qualify for quarter-finals

Scotland have reached the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup after beating Samoa 36-33 during their final pool match at St James' Park in Newcastle. Three Borderers were in the squad, including captain Greig Laidlaw.

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RWC: Scotland's Ford and Gray have bans overturned

Scotland have been handed a boost ahead of their quarter final clash with Australia in the rugby world cup on Sunday.

Kelso's Ross Ford and teammate Jonny Gray have had their three-week suspension lifted and are able to play with immediate effect, the Scottish Rugby Union has announced.

The pair were given the bans fo a joint tackle during last week's win over Samoa.

In a surprise move, World Rugby disciplinary bosses have now overturned the suspension - freeing up both met to run out at Twickenham. But, having prepared all week with Ford's understudy hooker Fraser Brown and back-up second-rower Tim Swinson, Cotter now has to decide whether to re-jig his team with just 24 hours to go before kick-off. A spokesman for the Dark Blues would only say: "Both Ross and Jonny are available to play and the Scotland team are considering their options."

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RWC: Ross Ford and Jonny Gray suspended

Ross Ford will be in the shadows for the rest of the World Cup Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Scotland rugby players Jonny Gray and Ross Ford, who's from the Borders, have been banned from playing rugby by the RFU for three weeks after making dangerous tackles against Samoa last Saturday. This means they will miss the rest of the tournament, including a quarter-final game against Australia on Sunday.

Hooker Ford and lock Gray were punished for their two-man tip-tackle on Samoa flanker Jack Lam.

They have 48 hours to challenge the ruling or face missing out on the rest of Scotland's campaign.

A spokesman for the national team said they were "disappointed" by Judicial Officer Christopher Quinlan QC's decision, adding: "We will consider carefully the full written judgement before making a decision on any future action."

Both Ford and Gray denied committing an act of foul play.

Kiwis praise British rugby hospitality

Cheryl and Neville Hawkins Credit: ITV Border

Cheryl and Neville Hawkins are watching the Scotland vs Samoa game at Hawick Rugby Club as part of their Rugby World Cup tour.

The couple are from New Zealand and are supporting Scotland and the All Blacks during the tournament.

They are personal friends of Scotland player Sean Maitland, who is originally from the North Island in New Zealand.

"It's been absolutely fantastic to be part of this year's Rugby World Cup. The atmosphere has been fantastic every where we've been and the people have been so friendly.

"We're having a great time cheering on Scotland who are our favourite team after the All Blacks of course!"

– Cheryl and Neville Hawkins

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Rugby World Cup: Scotland team arrive at St James' Park

Thousands of Scottish rugby fans have descended on Newcastle for their team's final pool match against Samoa.

Victory will guarantee Scotland a place in the quarter-finals.

Coverage of Scotland v Samoa starts at 2pm on ITV.

  • Have you travelled to Newcastle for the match? Tweet us your pictures @itvborder or email pamandian@itv.com.

Scotland 80 minutes from place in quarter-finals

Thousands of Scotland fans are expected to travel to St James' Park today Credit: ITV News

Scotland are just hours away from a game which could see them reach the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup.

The men in blue take on Samoa in their final pool match at St James' Park in Newcastle.

Three Borderers are once again in the squad, with Greig Laidlaw captaining his side. In their match against South Africa, full-back Stuart Hogg and hooker Ross Ford were taken off with injuries.

However, they will both start for Scotland today after being given the all-clear by team medics.

Thousands of Scotland fans are already on their way to Newcastle to support their team, knowing that a win will secure them a place in the quarter-finals.

Their opponents, Samoa, cannot qualify and will be without one of their key players, Alesana Tuilagi, who's been suspended for foul play.

ITV coverage begins at 2pm with kick-off at 2.30pm.

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