Andy Robinson today named three uncapped players in the Scotland squad for his first game in charge against Fiji.
Robinson called up Edinburgh back row Alan MacDonald, Glasgow forward Richie Vernon and Worcester back Alex Grove for next month’s opening autumn international at Murrayfield.
But there was no place in the squad for Glasgow star Dan Parks, who had widely been tipped for a recall due to a lack of options at fly-half.
Also omitted was Parks’ Warriors team-mate Jon Welsh, despite the young prop earning rave reviews for his performances this season.
Robinson said: “We’ve chosen the squad primarily on the basis of current form and there’s a good balance of players.”
Singling out flanker MacDonald - who turned 24 today - and Vernon, 22, for special praise, he added: “Both have done well this season where, once again, the competition in the back row is intense, with Roddy Grant also knocking at the door.”
They and Grove were all part of the IRB Nations Cup-winning Scotland A squad Robinson took to Romania in the summer shortly after his appointment.
The ex-England boss revealed prop Kyle Traynor and centre John Houston, both of his former club Edinburgh, had only narrowly missed out on selection for the Fiji game.
Robinson assured the pair, as well as Parks, Allister Hogg (Edinburgh) and Scott Gray (Northampton), they could yet force their way into contention for the remaining two November Tests against Australia and Argentina.
The Scotland squad will gather for a three-day training camp at St Andrews on November 2 and then reconvene at Murrayfield six days later ahead of the November 14 Fiji match.
Glasgow stars Max Evans and Richie Gray, both of whom are returning from injury, will join the party at St Andrews as part of their recovery programme.
Scotland squad for autumn international against Fiji at Murrayfield on Saturday, November 14 (kick-off 2.30pm):
Mike Blair (Edinburgh), Ben Cairns (Edinburgh), Chris Cusiter (Glasgow), Simon Danielli (Ulster), Nick de Luca (Edinburgh), Thom Evans (Glasgow), Phil Godman (Edinburgh), Alex Grove (Worcester), Rory Lamont (Toulon), Sean Lamont (Scarlets), Rory Lawson (Gloucester), Graeme Morrison (Glasgow), Chris Paterson (Edinburgh), Hugo Southwell (Stade Francais), Nikki Walker (Ospreys).
John Barclay (Glasgow), Johnnie Beattie (Glasgow), Kelly Brown (Glasgow), Geoff Cross (Edinburgh), Alasdair Dickinson (Gloucester), Ross Ford (Edinburgh), Dougie Hall (Glasgow), Nathan Hines (Leinster), Allan Jacobsen (Edinburgh), Alastair Kellock (Glasgow), Scott Lawson (Gloucester), Moray Low (Glasgow), Alan MacDonald (Edinburgh), Scott MacLeod (Edinburgh), Alasdair Strokosch (Gloucester), Richie Vernon (Glasgow), Jason White (Clermont Auvergne).