Scotland full back Chris Paterson insists the possible return of Simon Taylor will give Matt Williams' side a much needed boost for their RBS 6 Nations Championship game against Italy at Murrayfield on Saturday.
The No 8 has not pulled on the blue shirt since suffering serious cruciate ligament damage in the 2004 RBS 6 Nations Championship game against Ireland last March.
But Taylor made a triumphant try-scoring return for Edinburgh Rugby in their Celtic League 41-33 win against Leinster at the weekend which prompted Williams, who has yet to win a game in this tournament after seven attempts, to draft him into the squad for the visit of the Italians.
And Paterson said: "We've been waiting in anticipation, Simon is one of Scotland's truly world class players so for him to be back is a huge bonus for us.
"I was at the game on Saturday night and I thought he played well.
"He brings a whole new dimension to us, especially in defence and his ability to slow the opposition ball down could be key against Italy if he is involved.
"I don't know if he will be involved but he's certainly a world class player and we look forward to welcoming him back."
After successive defeats to France and Ireland, the latter being in a particularly disappointing performance, the Scots are looking to break their duck against the Italians in what is undoubtedly Williams' side's best chance of victory in this year's tournament.
Peter O'Mahony was named man of the match against England last month
21 April 2017, 7:22pm
Peter O'Mahony's performance in the RBS 6 Nations finale for Ireland against England was crucial to his selection for the British & Irish Lions on Wednesday, Ireland and Lions defence coach Andy Farrell has revealed.