Rugby

New dad Kyle Steyn keen to keep Calcutta Cup in Scotland’s hands

Steyn withdrew on the morning of the France loss after his wife Ally went into labour late on Friday afternoon, but he could return against England.

Kyle Steyn is back in contention after missing the France game
Kyle Steyn Kyle Steyn is back in contention after missing the France game (David Davies/PA)

New father Kyle Steyn is intent on helping Scotland maintain their recent ownership of the Calcutta Cup this weekend after watching helplessly from his couch as his team-mates suffered an agonising Guinness Six Nations defeat against France last time out.

The Glasgow wing was named in the starting XV for the Murrayfield showdown with Les Bleus a week past Saturday, but he had to withdraw on the morning of the game after his wife Ally went into labour late on the Friday afternoon.

Steyn’s daughter, Arabella, eventually arrived via Caesarean section late on Monday morning, almost two days after the 20-16 defeat by France in which the Scots were controversially denied victory after the officials decided against awarding them a late try when Sam Skinner thought he had grounded the ball on the whitewash.

“My wife had been in labour from about 4 o’clock on Friday and we were hoping maybe I could make it back (in time to face France) if baby was born in the middle of the night, but it didn’t go that way,” explained Steyn.

“I was busy on the couch, trying my best to watch, but every five minutes my attention went elsewhere.

“I was the same as every other Scot at the end, screaming ‘that’s down, that’s a try’. I was gutted for the boys, you could see it on their faces and that’s what really hurt, the feeling that it was one that got away.

Kyle Steyn watched from his couch as Scotland lost to France
Scotland v France Kyle Steyn watched from his couch as Scotland lost to France (Andrew Milligan/PA)

“But it was brilliant to be back in this week and see everybody. You can see the guys have very much put that behind them and I think the Calcutta Cup at home is an easy reason to move on from that and focus forward.”

Steyn has “amazing memories” of helping Scotland win 29-23 at Twickenham last February to make it three victories in succession over England.

Gregor Townsend’s side have lost only once in their last six meetings with their old rivals.

“We definitely take confidence from that, and a bit of momentum, but coming off the back of the World Cup, they’ve just made the semi-finals and they seem to be finding their gears under the new management,” said Steyn.

Steyn helped Scotland win last year’s Calcutta Cup at Twickenham
Kyle Steyn Steyn helped Scotland win last year’s Calcutta Cup at Twickenham (Adam Davy/PA)

“They are a really good side with a lot of threats, so it’s a great challenge for us. It’s an amazing game to play.

“I’ve never played (for the) Calcutta Cup at home so I can’t wait for that. As far as the Six Nations goes and being a Scottish rugby player, there’s no bigger occasion than the Calcutta Cup at home.

“We’re really excited by the opportunity, especially in a year where we’ve only got two home games.

“We had the force of Murrayfield behind us for the France game and the boys are really looking forward to feeling that support again on the weekend.”