Glasgow Warriors skipper Ryan Wilson has recovered from the shoulder problem that ruled him out of Scotland’s meeting with the All Blacks last weekend and has reclaimed his place in the side to meet the Wallabies.

However the 28-year-old has been challenged by coach Gregor Townsend to demonstrate why he has also been entrusted with the national team’s vice captaincy as competition for places heats up.

“Ryan feels in a much better place physically. He’s trained well,” said Townsend.

“There was a debate and it was a close decision last week on whether he’d be available and the guys who stepped in stepped up well – Cornell (Du Preez) and Luke (Hamilton) – so Ryan now knows it is his opportunity this week to play well.

“He’s a very important player for us – he’s our vice-captain, he does a lot in attack and defence to help the team be in a winning position and physically he should be in a really good place to play well.”

Wilson’s Warriors clubmate Lee Jones has missed out, however and after he started against both Samoa and New Zealand his coach admitted that the winger had been unfortunate to find himself out of the 23 man squad altogether as former British & Irish Lion Sean Maitland returns.

“Lee is unlucky to miss out on the squad but Byron McGuigan has trained very well for us and the fact he can cover other positions in the back-line – he’s played centre and full-back before – gives him an edge this weekend,” said Townsend.

“But Lee has played really well – it has given us a healthy competition in the back three.”

Ex-Warrior Maitland clearly impressed on his return for Sarancens following a lengthy absence due to an ankle injury.

“We watched Sean’s game on Saturday night in the hotel bar and it was great to see him getting involved so much and also that he didn’t get any issues with his ankle after that,” Townsend observed.

“Sean has been a quality player for Scotland over the last couple of seasons and it is the first time since his Glasgow days I have coached him, so it is great to see.”

There were four changes to the starting line up in all with Grant Gilchrist, the former Scotland captain, recalled ahead of Edinburgh clubmate Ben Toolis, while Simon Berghan is preferred to Zander Fagerson.

That is partly because the Glasgow Warriors tighthead prop is, along with clubmate Alex Dunbar, one of two players still working their way through the head injury assessment protocols, albeit both have been named in the matchday squad.

However it also allows the management to keep club front-row combinations together, with Fraser Brown also returning to the bench in place of Warriors clubmate George Turner.

“In terms of cohesion, in the front-row, Simon Berghan stats alongside the two Edinburgh front-rows and Zander on the bench alongside two Glasgow front-rows, which will help from a scrummaging point of view,” Townsend explained.

That is all the more important because of the recovery required after two bruising matches.

“It’s a week we have not been able to do much training-wise. We didn’t train on Monday and we had a lighter day yesterday,” the coach noted.