Rugby News & Views From an American Perspective
The Pools have been announced for the London, England stop on the IRB Sevens World Series. Set to take place May 22-23, London is the second to last stop on the series. Played at historic Twickenham Stadium, London is another great stop on the IRB series.
“The scene is set for what promises to be a highly-competitive tournament played in front of a record crowd in London. With just two events left to be played it is anyone’s guess as to who will be crowned champions with just six points seperating Samoa and New Zealand at the top of the standings,” said IRB Sevens Manager Beth Coalter. “This has undoubtedly been the most competitive Series to date and the likes of USA, Australia, Kenya, South Africa, Fiji and of course Hosts England will be looking to record their first Series title of the year. It will be two days of compelling action.”
Pools for the London Sevens
“Following Rugby Sevens’s Olympic inclusion there has been a marked increase in profile and attendance for the record-breaking Series and I am sure that London will be superbly attended once again,” added Coalter.
The USA has gotten far worse draws this season and their pool in London gives them a definite shot at reaching the Cup Round for the third straight tournament. In the event that the USA does reach the Cup Round, the points gained should boost them past Argentina in the standings.
Samoa is on fire right now with three straight tournament wins. The USA kicks off their Day 1 with the first game of the day against Samoa.
The squad then faces Argentina in a pivotal matchup. Barring either the USA or Argentina upsetting Samoa, the winner of this game will likely go onto the Cup Quarterfinals. The USA has been tough on Argentina of late, posting victories over them in both Las Vegas and Adelaide. The USA’s 28-12 win in Australia vaulted the team into their first-ever Cup Final.
The USA’s final pool opponent is Italy, a relatively inexperienced on the IRB Sevens World Series, but are not to be overlooked. Italy went 2-3 in Hong Kong posting wins over Russia (14-12) and Chinese Taipei (45-12).
The USA Sevens team assembles in the weeks leading up to London in their final preparation of the season. No announcement has been made regarding the training squad.