A FORMER Ardrossan Accies rugby star is finally set to receive a Scotland cap - more than half a century after representing his country.

Ian Murchie donned the dark blue jersey for a test match against Argentina in Buenos Aires on September 13, 1969 - but the Scottish Rugby Union's position on 'cap internationals' at the time meant he never received tangible recognition of his efforts.

Ian, who is one of 12 life members at Ardrossan Accies, played for the club back in the 1960s before moving to the big city to turn out for West of Scotland.

There, his talents caught the eye of the national selectors and earned him a place in the squad for Scotland's tour of Argentina at the end of the decade - the first time a Scotland national team had ever visited the country.

Ian's three tries during warm-up matches against Argentina C and Selecctionado Interior earned him a place in the starting XV for the first Test, playing at outside centre.

But his impressive form also made him a target for the physical Pumas side - and he suffered a serious injury in a bad tackle during the match, and never played for his country again.

At the time, the SRU did not recognise international games against Argentina as 'cap internationals' - so despite playing for his nation in a full Test match on an overseas tour, Ian was never officially capped.

This was until this week - when Ian, who lives on Arran and still regularly attends Accies first team fixtures, was included on a list of more than 50 players who are to be honoured with retrospective caps.

The decision, made by the Scottish Rugby Union's custodian board, was announced by SRU president Colin Rigby.

He said: “Those individuals who wore the thistle with pride and distinction, whether in Services or Victory internationals during and after the Second World War, or who played under the label of a ‘Scotland XV’ against other nations, will now join the fabled ranks of the 1,140 other men to have been capped by Scotland since 1871.

“Given this year marks the 150th anniversary of the formation of the Union, we wanted to look afresh at our history and recognise the rich and enduring contribution those players have made to our game.

“Awarding a cap retrospectively may seem purely symbolic or belated by some people, but I know from conversations with some of those players and their families what this decision will mean to them and that granting cap status will be cherished.”

Ian's former club also passed on their congratulation following the news.

They said: "A long overdue and well deserved recognition of his achievement in playing for his country.

"Many congratulations to a great servant of Ardrossan Academicals RFC."