Former Scotland international Jason Cummings has received a call up to represent Australia at the World Cup in Qatar.
The former Hibernian and Rangers forward, who scored on his Socceroos debut, is among a trio of Scottish-born players in the squad chosen by manager Graham Arnold alongside ex-Easter Road teammate Martin Boyle and Stoke City defender Harry Souttar.
Cummings, who qualifies for the Aussies through his mother, made two appearances for the Tartan Army in friendlies against the Netherlands and Hungary – but was allowed to switch his nationality having never appeared in a competitive game.
Manager Graham Arnold said the striker, who now plays in the A-League Men for Central Coast Mariners, would bring “a heap of energy and enjoyment” to the side after netting from the penalty spot in a win over New Zealand last month.
“When I brought him into camp for the New Zealand game, he gives us something different. His energy is fantastic,” he said.
“You can see at the Mariners, when he goes out on the field, you can see the joy that he brings to the rest of the team. And he’s very brave, and he’s prepared to do what needs to be done.
“Jason made that move, coming from Scotland out to Australia to show me and show Australia what he’s made of to go to a World Cup. And I think he’s got a very big smile on his face today.”
Aberdeen-born Boyle already has 19 caps for the side while Souttar, brother of Rangers defender and Scotland international John, was also born in the Granite City and has ten caps for the Australian side.
The Hibs winger is one of seven Scottish Premiership stars to make the squad, joining Celtic’s Aaron Mooy, Dundee United defender Aziz Behich, Hearts trio Nathaniel Atkinson, Cameron Devlin and Kye Rowles and St Mirren’s Keanu Baccus.
Arnold told how Devlin “broke down in tears” when told of his inclusion in the squad, with matches against Tunisia, Denmark and world champions France to come in Qatar.
Midfielder Jackson Irvine and striker Jamie MacLaren are also in the 26-man party – both of whom have Scottish-born parents.
MacLaren scored nine times in 30 appearances for Hibs between 2018 and 2019, while Irvine also represented the Hibees and won the League Cup with Ross County having come through the youth system at Celtic.
But St Mirren full-back Ryan Strain, St Johnstone’s Ryan McGowan and Dundee United goalkeeper Mark Birighitti missed out, as did former Celtic hero Tom Rogic – who has been limited to a handful of appearances since leaving Glasgow for West Bromwich Albion in the summer.