Former Carlisle Rugby Club man Gary Graham is one of four players to today have been released from Scotland’s Rugby World Cup training squad.

Stirling-born Graham, who grew up in Harraby, has returned to Newcastle Falcons while Glasgow Warriors pair Nick Grigg and Kyle Steyn, as well as Edinburgh scrum-half Henry Pyrgos, have also returned to their clubs.

"I’d like to thank these players for the work-rate and commitment they’ve shown as part of our preparations for the Rugby World Cup in Japan," said Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend.

"Players are often called-up from beyond the 31-man group that travels to a World Cup, so I’d encourage these players to keep working as hard on their skills and fitness as they have over the summer, as we may need to call on them in the weeks ahead."

It means Scotland's squad has been reduced to a 40-man group.

Carlisle-born Chris Harris, whose grandmother is from Dumfries, remains with the squad.

Scotland's World Cup preparations will intensify once again next Saturday as a series of four home-and-away summer Test matches begins when Scotland travel to face France, before hosting the return fixture at BT Murrayfield a week later.

The first leg of the double-header against Georgia follows on August 31, where Scotland will be the first Tier 1 nation to face the Lelos on home soil at the Dinamo Arena in Tbilisi.

They then complete their competitive preparations on home soil when they face Georgia on Friday, September 6 at BT Murrayfield.