Tom Smith was hailed as one of Scotland’s “best ever players” by national team coach Gregor Townsend on Wednesday following the former prop’s death aged 50. Smith, capped 61 times by Scotland, had been diagnosed with colon cancer in 2019.
He had won just three Scotland caps when he was selected for the Lions’ 1997 tour of South Af-rica, where he helped out-scrummage a physically larger home pack during a 2-1 series win over the Springboks.
Smith was also involved four years later in the combined side’s series win in Australia, where he became the only Scottish player to have played in six consecutive Tests for the Lions.
“Tom was one of the toughest and most skilful players I had the pleasure to call a team-mate,” said Townsend after the Scottish Rugby Union an-nounced Smith’s death.
“He succeeded in the most challenging of envi-ronments and kept up a high level of play well into his thirties. “Tom also did a tremendous amount for chari-table causes and was a great family man.—APP