Scotland has begun a global trawl for players that will no doubt begin with them trying again to lure Crusaders wing Sean Maitland.

Winless in their last five tests and staring at the Six Nations wooden spoon, the Scots unveiled the original kilted-Kiwi, Sean Lineen, unexpectedly in a new role - head of acquisitions for the Scottish Rugby Union.

Loosely translated, that means he will be responsible for identifying and then luring Scottish-qualified players from around the world.

New Zealand, Australia and South Africa will be the three foreign markets hoarding the most potential talent, particularly the former given the heavy migration of Scots throughout last century.


A host of recent All Blacks were also eligible for Scotland including Richie McCaw, Ali Williams and Jamie Mackintosh.

Lineen, who played for Counties before backpacking to Scotland, where he won 29 test caps, has been given licence to find these sorts of players.

Maitland would be an ideal target, as he is arguably the best outside back in the country not yet capped by the All Blacks.

With Cory Jane, Richard Kahui, Ben Smith, Zac Guildford and Isaia Toeava all locked in for some time yet, Maitland may find an All Black cap just as elusive this year as he did in 2010 and 2011 when he was rated by many as the best finisher in the country.

Maitland is half Scottish and is understood to have been sounded out by Scotland coach Andy Robinson in 2010. The player was keen to stay with the Crusaders and chase his dream of being an All Black and signed a two-year contract last year.

The 23-year-old will by no means be the only target.

Scotland have endured a tough past 10 years or so.

Take out surprise wins against Australia (2009) and South Africa (2010) and the Scots have had little to cheer since they won the last Five Nations in 1999. They scraped through to the World Cup quarter-final in 2003 thanks to a last minute try against Fiji and were just as fortunate to make it again in 2007 when they edged Italy in a tense but desperately bad affair.


They didn't make it to the last eight in 2011 and were almost embarrassed by Romania.

Since losing to Argentina and England at the World Cup, the Scots have been beaten again by England, as well as Wales, France and Ireland.

They play Italy overnight in a wooden spoon decider and, even if they win, they are determined to rebuild as a rugby nation. They have pursued an aggressive recruitment policy in the past - hunting the likes of John and Martin Leslie, Brendan Laney and Gordon Simpson.

The New Zealanders who have represented them have had various degrees of success. John Leslie was arguably the pick of the bunch, helping Scotland to the Five Nations title in 1999 when they played expansive and creative football.

Two of Scotland's most recent stars, Nathan Hines and Dan Parks, are both Australian-born and raised, while one of the finds of this Six Nations campaign has been Zimbabwean-born David Denton.