The England Sevens squad tour the world on the annual HSBC Sevens World Series, exciting crowds with tries galore in the fast-paced, high-octane, abridged form of the game.
In 2013-14 England will compete in nine events starting on the Gold Coast in Australia and taking in tournaments in Dubai, Port Elizabeth, Las Vegas, Wellington, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Glasgow and London. The final leg - the Marriott London Sevens - is at Twickenham on May 10-11, 2014.
England also compete in the summer FIRA AER European GP Sevens tournaments, the IRB Rugby World Cup Sevens - finishing second in the 2013 Moscow event - and go to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in the July 2014.
Sevens becomes an Olympic sport in the 2016 Rio games so these are exciting times for both players and fans.
A spectacular spree of 52 tries, an England record, in the IRB 2012-13 World Series swept Dan Norton, the top touchdown maker in the tournament last season, into second place behind Ben Gollings (220) in the list of England’s all-time top scorers. With three in at the Nelson Mandela Bay event in December, he increased his total to143 overall and has overtaken Richard Haughton (106), Rob Thirlby (101) and former captain Simon Amor (71), now the England Sevens head coach.
Winning the Emirates Airlines London Sevens in front of a home crowd at Twickenham in May 2009 was “an amazing feeling” in the words of James Rodwell, who plays No. 8 at 15-a-side but shows adaptability, mobility and handling skills in the abbreviated game.
Scoring a debut try in the Paris Sevens with his first touch of the ball against Canada in 2004 hallmarked Leeds-born Rob Vickerman as a player to watch. He has now scored 26 tries in 29 tournaments. They include one that helped England to beat France 29-12 in the Cup final in Dubai in December 2011 and two, against South Africa and hosts Hong Kong, last March when his side lifted the Bowl.
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