Jamie Ritchie excited about leading Scotland into Rugby World Cup

Jamie Ritchie has recovered from a calf injury
Jamie Ritchie has recovered from a calf injury
©Steve Haag

Scotland captain Jamie Ritchie is excited about the prospect of leading his side into the upcoming Rugby World Cup campaign in France.

Ritchie last played during Edinburgh's United Rugby Championship match away to Ulster four months ago and missed Scotland's first two World Cup warm-up games due to a calf injury.

He now returns to the starting line up in Scotland's upcoming fixture against Les Bleus on Saturday night and the 26-year-old is looking forward to the encounter.

“I feel like I’ve had a good pre-season and I’m feeling good, really excited to get back playing,” he said on Friday.

“I’ve been sad to miss out the last couple of weeks because I was looking forward to getting a run out at Murrayfield but I have had to wait until this week so I’m really excited to get going.

“No, not really,” he said when asked if he was worried about being fit in time.

“It was just a little niggle I picked up in the week of the Italy match.

“It was probably touch and go for the home game against France, we were just erring on the side of caution. I was always going to be good to go for this week.”

Meanwhile, head coach Gregor Townsend said he was always confident of Ritchie's fitness leading to the showpiece event.

"Jamie is probably in the best shape I've seen him in over the last few years," said Townsend.

"He's had a couple of injuries that have curtailed his progress but he's built on what he did in the Six Nations and I think he's fitter and stronger.

"We've had a few lively sessions and we had a full hit-out on two occasions and Jamie stood out really well. He trained fully this week in hot conditions and looked good, so we can't wait to see him play."