Scotland will be without Finn Russell for their Six Nations clash against France in Paris.
There was hope the Racing 92 ace could recover from a weekend head injury when he arrived symptom-free in Edinburgh on Monday, but those hopes have now been dashed.
A statement from the Scottish Rugby Union read: “The 26-year-old playmaker has not satisfied the requirements of today’s component of the graduated return to play protocol – two days on from sustaining the injury in Racing 92’s Top 14 clash with Toulouse – meaning there is insufficient time for him to be considered for this weekend’s action.
“He will now return to the care of his club’s medical team.”
Russell had a hand in all five of Scotland’s tries against Italy and set up their solitary score in the defeat by Ireland, with Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend already losing Stuart Hogg and Huw Jones to injuries.
Townsend, though, remains ‘very hopeful’ Hogg will play some part in the rest of the campaign.
“We’ll know more about his chances of playing over the next few weeks after that,” Townsend said.
“I’m very hopeful that he’ll get good news and that he’ll be available to play some part in the Six Nations.”
The coach does have cover, however, in the shape of Blair Kinghorn, who replaced Hogg in the defeat to Ireland.
“Blair obviously had a great game against Italy,” Townsend said of the man who scored Scotland’s first Six Nations hat-trick. “He backed that up with his first touch as he got through the Ireland defence on Saturday and was heavily involved in the second half.
“We’ve got good strength and depth in the back three. Tommy Seymour and Sean Maitland have both played at full-back and are both very experienced players.
“I believe Byron McGuigan is back for his club this week, so if Stuart is missing – and I really hope that’s not the case – then we do have other players who are in really good form.”
23 February: France v Scotland – 14:15
9 March: Scotland v Wales – 14:15
16 March: England v Scotland – 17:00