January 18, 2017
Eagles 7s Selected for Wellington & Sydney
The third round of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens, the Wellington Sevens, will be held in Wellington, New Zealand January 28-29, 2017.
Head Coach Mike Friday has selected his squad for the tournament and HSBC Sydney7s, with the latter to be held in conjunction with the Women’s Sevens Series event in Australia, Feb. 4-5. Captain Madison Hughes, Carlin Isles and Brett Thompson return to Eagles 7s team.
The Eagles are in Pool C with France, Samoa and New Zealand and begin pool play against ninth-ranked France Friday at 7:18 p.m. ET. The Wellington Sevens live stream will be available to viewers in the United States on the World Rugby Sevens Series website.
At the HSBC Capetown 7s, Perry Baker captained the team in Madison Hughes absence and his 10 tries in Dubai and South Africa helped him to become the U.S’s all time try scorer with 86 tries.
In USA Rugby’s article, Head Coach Mike Friday said that “Perry was outstanding in the last two legs not only in attack but also his defensive work and efforts. He is proving to be a consistent performer on the circuit. This is not a question of luck but more the hard work and study of his craft in between tournaments and on the training pitch. His work ethic to be the best he can is still burning bright and long may it continue. He is maturing into a fine rugby player.”
Carlin Isles returns to the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series for the first time since the USA Sevens in 2016. He led all Olympians in tries at the Rio Olympics in August, but he aggravated an injury and required recovery time. With his return to the team, he will once again team with Baker with the duo’s speed giving other teams fits as they defend these prolific try scorers.
Brett Thompson also will be returning to the squad after an injury curtailed his selection for Rio, as well as the first two legs of the Series. The other forwards Danny Barrett and Andrew Durutalo will welcome his addition.
Look for both Folau Niua and Stephen Tomasin to amp up their performance in the attack, just as they did during the first two legs of the Series. Martin Iosefo will also be looking to find some gaps and make his presence felt. Matai Leuta is also a powerful force.
Don Pati and speedster Kevin Williams gained their first caps during the first two Series and will compliment the other backs when they enter the match.
The Eagles enter the Series in 8th place with 18 points. They are in a tough pool with France, Samoa and New Zealand, but they enter tournaments with the mindset instilled in them to compete for titles.
With time difference in the U.S., the Eagles will face France on Friday, January 27 at 7:18 ET. They then play Samoa at 10:42 p.m. ET and conclude Pool play against New Zealand on Saturday, Jan. 28 at 3:02 a.m. ET.
Men’s Eagles Sevens – HSBC Wellington Sevens & HSBC Sydney7s
1. Carlin Isles 2. Matai Leuta 3. Danny Barrett 4. Brett Thompson 5. Don Pati 6. Andrew Durutalo 7. Folau Niua 8.
Kevon Williams Connor Wallace-Sims 9. Stephen Tomasin 10. Madison Hughes (C) 11. Perry Baker 12. Martin Iosefo
Update: Connor Wallace-Sims replaces injured Kevon Williams. When Connor enters a match, he will earn his first Eagles7s cap.
Men’s Eagles Sevens Staff
Mike Friday – Head Coach, Chris Brown – Assistant Coach, Brian Green – Physiotherapist, Sarah Sall – Manager
Men’s Eagles Sevens – HSBC Wellington Sevens
v. France – Friday, Jan. 27 @ 7:18 p.m. ET
v. Samoa – Friday, Jan. 27 @ 10:42 p.m. ET
v. New Zealand – Saturday, Jan. 28 @ 3:02 a.m. ET