The HSBC World Sevens Series will be held 25-26, 2020 in Hamilton, New Zealand. This is a combined Women’s and Men’s event that has modified determination of place finishes as the Quarterfinal round has been eliminated for both Hamilton and the following stop in Sydney.
The USA Women began the 2019-2020 season with two straight medal finishes in Glendale (gold) and Dubai (bronze), the USA Women’s Sevens fell in the quarterfinals at Cape Town to finish fifth.
Head Coach Chris Brown has selected 14 players for Hamilton with three changes made from Dubai and Cape Town.
Cheta Emba and Joanne Fa’avesi will travel as injury reserves with Stephanie Rovetti back in the starting rotation. Emba has competed in all three stops this season while Fa’avesi travels for the first time after recovering from an injury at the end of the 2019 World Series. Rovetti rejoins the group after helping the U.S. win gold at the opening stop in Glendale.
The full squad owns 212 tournaments with 179 of that held by the primary 12-player lineup.
The USA Women’s Sevens will face Russia, Brazil, and Australia in Pool B for Hamilton.
- No Cup Quarterfinals will be held. The top teams in each of the three pools and highest-ranked teams after them will automatically qualify for the Cup Semifinals.
- The two highest-ranked teams remaining will face one another in the 5th Place Final while the two highest-ranked teams after them will play in the 7th Place Final. This sequence continues for the 9th place and 11th place rounds, respectively.
Russia will be up first on Friday, Jan 24 at 4:14 PM ET and are currently ranked sixth. Brazil will be next and are currently fighting against relegation with their 12th place position.
Pool play concludes against second-place Australia who has made two Cup Finals this season, losing first to the Eagles Sevens in Glendale and most recently to New Zealand in Cape Town.
HEAD COACH CHRIS BROWN
“We are very excited to be heading to New Zealand. To be able to get back out there and make a quality statement in a few components of play we haven’t been pleased with is important. And, of course, to continue the progress we’ve made in other areas.”
“Throughout this season, trying to select the final traveling roster has continued to get harder; and while it is a positive for how we challenge and enhance what we do daily, it does make a number of conversations so much tougher. Still, this is a key component we need within our environment to truly hit the standards of play we aim for.”
Hamilton marks the fourth of eight rounds in the women’s HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series which means the season is very quickly reaching its peak. While the group wasn’t completely satisfied with their fifth-place finish in Cape Town, the long break between stops has provided a refreshing platform for the team to recalibrate. Only eight points separate the United States from first-place New Zealand and only two points separate the squad from second-place Australia, making a finish at the top of the standings every bit as attainable. A revised format for Hamilton will bring new challenges and added pressures as the group channels its depth to overcome the tight margins to make the Semifinals.
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Score updates are available by following @USARugby on Twitter, Instagram Story, and Facebook Story. Match recaps are posted within 90 minutes of full time on www.usa.rugby, as well as Facebook and Twitter.
USA Women’s Eagles Sevens Squad + Tournaments Played
1 Stephanie Rovetti (Flyhalf/Wing, 4) 2 Ilona Maher (Center/Prop, 10) 3 Abby Gustaitis (Co-Captain, Prop/Hooker, 10) 4 Nicole Heavirland (Hooker / Scrumhalf, 22) 5 Alev Kelter (Center/Prop, 32) 6 Lauren Doyle (Flyhalf/Wing, 28) 7 Naya Tapper (Wing/Prop, 20) 8 Jordan Gray-Matyas (Prop, 12) 9 Eti Haungatau (Prop, 2) 10 Kayla Canett (Scrumhalf/Flyhalf, 8) 11 Kris Thomas (Co-Captain), Hooker/Center, 24) 12 Kristi Kirshe (Center/Wing, 7) 13 Cheta Emba (Prop/Wing, injury reserve, 15) 14 Nana Fa’avesi (Scrumhalf, injury reserve, 18)
USA Women’s Eagles Sevens Staff
Head Coach Chris Brown, Strength & Conditioning Matt Long, Performance Analyst JD Stephenson, Athletic Trainer Nicole Titmas, Team Manager Liz Strohecker
vs Russia Fri, Jan 24 – 4:14 PM ET
vs Brazil Fri, Jan 24 – 9:52 PM ET
vs Australia Sat, Jan 25 – 3:41 PM ET
Knockout rounds begin at 6:08 PM ET on Saturday, Jan 25.