Scotland captain Greig Laidlaw has played down the importance of Saturday's home Six Nations clash with Ireland as a marker for the Rugby World Cup and says his side are concentrating on claiming the European crown for now.
The double grand-slam victor was omitted from last weekend's 32-20 defeat by England, although his replacement Robbie Henshaw struggled positionally at Dublin's Aviva Stadium.
Injuries to Robbie Henshaw and Garry Ringrose, who picked up a knock in training, have led to a start for Chris Farrell at outside centre, with Rob Kearney returning at full-back after a thigh injury.
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Meanwhile Chris Farrell partners Bundee Aki in midfield following a Dublin defeat that ended their hopes of back-to-back Grand Slams. "It's just a bit of aggravation after having a knock".More news: Here's The Differences Between Motorola's Four New Moto G7 Android Phones
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Lock Quinn Roux is promoted from the bench with Devin Toner (ankle) also ruled out and flanker Sean O'Brien is preferred to Josh van der Flier.
"It does make it hard; the problem is he maybe could have played".
'You've got Chris Farrell sitting in the wings, massively motivated to do his best, ' said Schmidt. So it's a great opportunity to get him in and give him a run. "He stepped in once a year ago and got man of the match and he's a guy who's getting back to form after the long lay-off he had".
James Ryan and Quinn Roux were playing Scotland this weekend, with Ultan Dillane the backup for his first test since November 2017.
The game will be only Farrell's second Six Nations appearance.