Team GB Sevens plans unveiled

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Post by Rugby Fan on Thu 28 May 2015, 4:01 pm

Details remain thin. Joe Lydon is the team performance manager, but we already knew that. No coaches have been named. A selection panel with representatives from England, Wales and Scotland will choose.

This note on player eligibility is new:

In order to be eligible for selection, players must hold a British passport and should have previous sevens experience at international level having played in any one or more of the following tournaments in the 14-month period prior to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games:


  •    World Rugby International World Sevens Series
  •     Rugby Europe International Sevens Tournaments
  •    Invitational preparation tournament


Eligible players will be required to express their interest in being selected through their respective home union’s performance programmes
.

http://www.englandrugby.com/news/team-sevens-programme-unveiled/

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Post by LondonTiger on Thu 28 May 2015, 4:04 pm

"Invitational preparation tournament"

Sounds like a way to get non Sevens players into the team

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Post by LordDowlais on Thu 28 May 2015, 4:13 pm

If we are being honest the bulk of the squad should be made up with English players, with a few from Wales and Scotland just for variety.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Thu 28 May 2015, 11:24 pm

The final squad will be 12 players, so there's not a lot of wriggle room on selection.

It'll be interesting to see whether any fifteens players who miss out on the World Cup consider trying for a different career high at Rio. For England, that might include Wade. Croft and Foden. Don't know whether Jonathan Davies has any sevens experience (or interest).

The England coach Simon Armor looks like he might be in the box seat for the Team GB job but some journalists sound a bit premature in saying that Tom Mitchell will be Rio captain. He certainly has a good chance, but it's far from a done deal when we don't know who plans to throw their hat in the ring.

I see Josh Lewsey is one of the Welsh representatives on the Sevens board.

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Post by propdavid_london on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:27 am

I think it would be a bit unfair and bad practice to bring in 15s players into the olympic squads.
There arent many that you would want in there anyway - Wade being the exception and or Charlie Walker from Quins. S.Hogg!

We have full time professional 7s players to select from who have a number of years experience. They must be the selection pool for the Olympics.
England have had a bit of a dip in form over the last few seasons - but recent performances including a win over the ABs suggests that they are starting to click.
As LD suggests - the bulk will presumably come from the England 7s side and then a good number from the Welsh 7s squad. I havent seen enough of Scots to see if there is anyone of note that should come in.

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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:29 am

There is not and should never be a team GB in sports played by the home nations separately IMO. It will just lead to rows and bitterness.

SRU. WRU should boycott it. Let England claim to be GB

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Post by lostinwales on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:30 am

TJ wrote:There is not and should never be a team GB in sports played by the home nations separately IMO.  It will just lead to rows and bitterness.

SRU. WRU should boycott it.  Let England claim to be GB

Yep - just look at the Lions

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:32 am

TJ wrote:There is not and should never be a team GB in sports played by the home nations separately IMO.  It will just lead to rows and bitterness.

SRU. WRU should boycott it.  Let England claim to be GB

Does that mean we need to hand back curling and cycling Olympic medals?

Also WRU and SRU nominated England to be the qualifying team. After that anyone is eligible.

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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:33 am

That is not a "team GB" is it? thats a invitational team and its GB AND Ireland

You will get a lot of nationality based arguments about who is selected. It will not be a cohesive team.


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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:34 am

LondonTiger wrote:
TJ wrote:There is not and should never be a team GB in sports played by the home nations separately IMO.  It will just lead to rows and bitterness.

SRU. WRU should boycott it.  Let England claim to be GB

Does that mean we need to hand back curling and cycling Olympic medals?

Also WRU and SRU nominated England to be the qualifying team. After that anyone is eligible.

Curling was simply the scotland team in GB colours. Same as I would suggest goes into the 7s. England team in GB colours

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Post by lostinwales on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:37 am

TJ wrote:That is not a "team GB" is it?  thats a invitational team and its GB AND Ireland

You will get a lot of nationality based arguments about who is selected.  It will not be a cohesive team.  

So with the Lions you add a few players from Eire and then the team becomes cohesive? The Irish would probably agree Smile

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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 11:42 am

Its the "team GB" I object to

The lions is not a "team GB". There is no "team GB" in rugby.

The lions has a long history but its still often not a cohesive team due to its multinational makeup but touring makes this easier to acheive. The olympics will be very differnt.

Its just my viewpoint

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 12:26 pm

So what you are saying is that any Welsh or Scottish Sevens players good enough to play in a GB team should be forced to miss out on what would be the biggest stage possible for a sevens player because of your delicate sensibilities re nationality?

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Post by Rugby Fan on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 12:37 pm

TJ wrote:There is not and should never be a team GB in sports played by the home nations separately IMO.  It will just lead to rows and bitterness.
I don't recall any rows or bitterness when GB won the men's hockey gold at the Seoul Olympics.

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 12:40 pm

TJ you are talking nonsense, I will be supporting team GB in the 7's, whether they are full of English, Scotts or Welsh.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 12:44 pm

LordDowlais wrote:TJ you are talking nonsense, I will be supporting team GB in the 7's, whether they are full of English, Scotts or Welsh.

Same here. My only hope is that they use players who play sevens.

I feel that the Olympics should be the pinnacle for people who go. Hence why I do not feel that Tennis or Football should be there, nor 15 a side stars.

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Post by Cyril on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 12:44 pm

If there are any Welsh or Scottish players worthy of their places I want them in the GB 7s side.

I'm sure the GB 7s coaches won't be worried about a bit of 'unrest' on web forums Smile

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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:39 pm

Certainly no Scots players worth a team place. adding any to the england squad would just weaken it - the best thing is simply to use the england team. Dunno about the welsh but i doubt any of their players would enhance the england 7s squad

When football went into the Olympics this is what happened. The england team went in under GB colours. SFA refused to take part

I just think it completely wrong to have a GB side in a sport that is always played by the individual nations.

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:43 pm

TJ wrote:When football went into the Olympics this is what happened. The england team went in under GB colours.

I think players like Ryan Giggs and Craig Bellamy would take offence to this. Also there were quite a few Welsh players in that GB side.

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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:44 pm

I thought the welsh boycotted it as well - or were the players given free choice? Certainly the SFA refused to take part rightly so IMO

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:47 pm

TJ wrote:I thought the welsh boycotted it as well - or were the players given free choice?  Certainly the SFA refused to take part rightly so IMO

No the Welsh FA allowed the Welsh players to represent their country. Scotland opted out as they were worried it could affect their status within FIFA.

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Post by TJ on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:48 pm

Aye - I checked - welsh guys did play

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Post by rodders on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:49 pm

Ryan Giggs was captain no?
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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 01 Jun 2015, 1:51 pm

rodders wrote:Ryan Giggs was captain no?

Yes. I took my daughter to watch the GB V Uruguay game, everybody was booing Suarez and the atmosphere was great, I was just chuffed to bits that I could take my daughter to he olympics.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Mon 22 Jun 2015, 9:11 am

US Sevens coach Mike Friday has criticized the Team GB set up, saying that they've missed a chance to plan effectively for Rio, and will likely find themselves underpowered.

http://www.therugbypaper.co.uk/featured-post/22357/do-team-gb-have-the-athletes-to-win-gold/

He points out that two leading candidates for the coaching job, himself and Ben Ryan, are signed up to the US and Fiji respectively, so he can't see how Joe Lydon has any option but to select the current England coach. The impression you get, is that Friday thinks he and Ryan might both have fancied the job, but couldn't hang around waiting for Team GB to decide what to do.

“In terms of the players that’s an even bigger abyss.  From what I am hearing from New Zealand if Team GB are going to take this seriously they’ll need to have athletes that can compete physically as well as from the skill perspective.

“While there are some great Sevens players in the England, Scotland and Wales teams, they haven’t got the physical capabilities to compete with a Julian Savea or a Sonny Bill Williams.

“If Team GB want to be taken seriously they need to get their house in order and be clear whether or not it’s all Union players or whether or not they include League players, because I don’t think there is anything in the Olympic Constitution that precludes them.

“Team GB have got so many hurdles to cross because they have left it so late to sort it out,” Friday added. “For me they should have had a strategy in place for the start of the qualifying season (October) so that in the event of qualifying they knew what the plan was.

“Where are they  going to get their competition? How will they get to a point where they have a working relationship with Premiership Rugby and the Pro 12 with regard to getting the access to the players they need – like George North, Anthony Watson and Sam Warburton. They need those type of players to compliment the likes of Tom Mitchell.


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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 22 Jun 2015, 9:36 am

So a tantrum then from Friday?

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Post by Rugby Fan on Mon 22 Jun 2015, 1:04 pm

LondonTiger wrote:So a tantrum then from Friday?

He certainly doesn't sound happy but he has a point.

If other sevens teams are going to step up for Rio - we already know NZ will - then Team GB needs a clear route to do that too, and we don't have it even at this late stage.

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Post by Don Alfonso on Mon 22 Jun 2015, 1:22 pm

I wonder if any Ulster players will be interested?

<backs slowly out of room, closing door silently behind>

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Post by whocares on Mon 22 Jun 2015, 1:29 pm

even France are starting to incorporate known XV players like Ouedraogo (capped flanker), Grosso (Castres wing) and Marvin O'Connor (bayonne/montpelier wing) in order to try to bridge the gap with the top teams (I insist on "try" as they dont really stand a chance anyway). our 7s players lacked power and were not tall enough (restarts even more important in 7s). I dont believe in a strict 'only 7s players' in the team rule. probably only works for Fidji (where they all play 7s I suppose). Rugby World and the IOC already stated that they want to see the best players at Rio, that's very important for 7s to be around in future olympics. Imagine what George North could bring to "team GB" Wink

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Post by Steffan on Mon 22 Jun 2015, 3:33 pm

I'm not really bothered about which countries the players are from and that but like football...rugby has no place at the Olympics so I will not be supporting Team GB

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Post by Steve_rugby on Wed 24 Jun 2015, 6:48 pm

Steffan wrote:I'm not really bothered about which countries the players are from and that but like football...rugby has no place at the Olympics so I will not be supporting Team GB

Yes it does, it has as much right as any sport including BMX and synchronized swimming.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Wed 24 Jun 2015, 11:06 pm

Don Alfonso wrote:I wonder if any Ulster players will be interested?

<backs slowly out of room, closing door silently behind>

Well there's really only Pienaar...

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Post by Rugby Fan on Wed 06 Apr 2016, 3:04 pm

Rugby Paper on the mess which is Team GB Sevens.

http://www.therugbypaper.co.uk/features/columnists/nick-cain/25498/nick-cain-column-james-haskell-can-add-muscle-to-gbs-bid-for-rio-gold/
The pre-Olympic mismanagement of team GB appeared to peak last week, when, in an attempt to bury bad news amid England’s Grand Slam hype, it was announced that Joe Lydon, the RFU’s head of international player development, had resigned.

Lydon had the lead role in formulating and planning the team GB strategy for Rio, and the fact that four months before the Olympics he has headed for the exit tells us all we need to know about our team’s preparations.

If you don't want to read it, the gist of Cain's piece is that everyone has left it far too late to plan a way for top 15s players to get into the GB sevens squad. He puts this down to the introduction of central contracts, which cut the connection between clubs and international sevens.

(Teams like NZ have central contracts for sevens players but, since the 15s stars are also centrally contracted, that set-up works in tandem rather than in opposition).

USA coach Mike Friday, who had applied to run Team GB, argues that one last ditch measure should be for all Scottish and Welsh Pro12 teams, and all Premiership clubs, to agree to make one player available at the end of the regular season to train up and try out for the Olympic side.

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Post by Tattie Scones RRN on Wed 06 Apr 2016, 4:22 pm

TJ wrote:Certainly no Scots players worth a team place.  adding any to the england squad would just weaken it - the best thing is simply to use the england team.  Dunno about the welsh but i doubt any of their players would enhance the england 7s squad

When football went into the Olympics this is what happened.  The england team went in under GB colours.  SFA refused to take part

I just think it completely wrong to have a GB side in a sport that is always played by the individual nations.

With respect TJ, that's bollix.

Jamie Farndale would probably make the team quite easily.

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Post by fa0019 on Wed 06 Apr 2016, 4:57 pm

Tattie Scones RRN wrote:
TJ wrote:Certainly no Scots players worth a team place.  adding any to the england squad would just weaken it - the best thing is simply to use the england team.  Dunno about the welsh but i doubt any of their players would enhance the england 7s squad

When football went into the Olympics this is what happened.  The england team went in under GB colours.  SFA refused to take part

I just think it completely wrong to have a GB side in a sport that is always played by the individual nations.

With respect TJ, that's bollix.

Jamie Farndale would probably make the team quite easily.

Stuart Hogg?

Off the top of my head these would be the players I think could be serious 7s players in that side from XVs

George North
Justin Tipuric
Rhys Webb
Anthony Watson
Matt Tait
Tom Croft
Danny Care
John Hardie
Tim Visser

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Post by Poorfour on Wed 06 Apr 2016, 5:29 pm

Definitely agree with Visser - and Olly Lindsay-Hague has reportedly been released to the 7s squad. Walker would be an option but lacks the physicality to take on NZ or the Blitzbokke.

Croft would be good if he still has all his pace - I haven't seen enough of him recently to be sure. But the 15s forward that the 7s have expressed interest in is Clifford - who would be excellent but is also likely to feature heavily in Eddie Jones's plans for the summer. Lad's got a difficult choice to make... but I suspect that Eddie will be persuasive.

Am I right in thinking that the Northern Irish players (i.e. those with UK passports) were given the option to join GB or join Ireland and chose the latter?
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Post by fa0019 on Wed 06 Apr 2016, 5:31 pm

Poorfour wrote:Definitely agree with Visser - and Olly Lindsay-Hague has reportedly been released to the 7s squad. Walker would be an option but lacks the physicality to take on NZ or the Blitzbokke.

Croft would be good if he still has all his pace - I haven't seen enough of him recently to be sure. But the 15s forward that the 7s have expressed interest in is Clifford - who would be excellent but is also likely to feature heavily in Eddie Jones's plans for the summer. Lad's got a difficult choice to make... but I suspect that Eddie will be persuasive.

Am I right in thinking that the Northern Irish players (i.e. those with UK passports) were given the option to join GB or join Ireland and chose the latter?

Ireland doesn't have a team right?

In any case I don't think team GB would approach any players out of respect similar to that in Boxing. I think it would perhaps do their Ireland credentials a little harm if they did.

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Post by LeinsterFan4life on Wed 06 Apr 2016, 5:46 pm

fa0019 wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Definitely agree with Visser - and Olly Lindsay-Hague has reportedly been released to the 7s squad. Walker would be an option but lacks the physicality to take on NZ or the Blitzbokke.

Croft would be good if he still has all his pace - I haven't seen enough of him recently to be sure. But the 15s forward that the 7s have expressed interest in is Clifford - who would be excellent but is also likely to feature heavily in Eddie Jones's plans for the summer. Lad's got a difficult choice to make... but I suspect that Eddie will be persuasive.

Am I right in thinking that the Northern Irish players (i.e. those with UK passports) were given the option to join GB or join Ireland and chose the latter?

Ireland doesn't have a team right?

In any case I don't think team GB would approach any players out of respect similar to that in Boxing. I think it would perhaps do their Ireland credentials a little harm if they did.
Ireland does have a team and it is still trying to qualify for the Olympics.

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Post by fa0019 on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 9:21 am

LeinsterFan4life wrote:
fa0019 wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Definitely agree with Visser - and Olly Lindsay-Hague has reportedly been released to the 7s squad. Walker would be an option but lacks the physicality to take on NZ or the Blitzbokke.

Croft would be good if he still has all his pace - I haven't seen enough of him recently to be sure. But the 15s forward that the 7s have expressed interest in is Clifford - who would be excellent but is also likely to feature heavily in Eddie Jones's plans for the summer. Lad's got a difficult choice to make... but I suspect that Eddie will be persuasive.

Am I right in thinking that the Northern Irish players (i.e. those with UK passports) were given the option to join GB or join Ireland and chose the latter?

Ireland doesn't have a team right?

In any case I don't think team GB would approach any players out of respect similar to that in Boxing. I think it would perhaps do their Ireland credentials a little harm if they did.
Ireland does have a team and it is still trying to qualify for the Olympics.

Pretty steep task for a team that doesn't enter regular competitions. Not in the world series right? One place remaining to come from the winners of a final tournament including Samoa

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Post by TJ on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 9:29 am

I thought the team was supposed to be 7s players only - not 15s drafted in

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Post by IanBru on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 9:31 am

Tattie Scones RRN wrote:
TJ wrote:Certainly no Scots players worth a team place.  adding any to the england squad would just weaken it - the best thing is simply to use the england team.  Dunno about the welsh but i doubt any of their players would enhance the england 7s squad

When football went into the Olympics this is what happened.  The england team went in under GB colours.  SFA refused to take part

I just think it completely wrong to have a GB side in a sport that is always played by the individual nations.

With respect TJ, that's bollix.

Jamie Farndale would probably make the team quite easily.
Absolutely. Jamie Johnston, Scott Riddell and Lee Jones could also be in with a shout.

On the curling point, the comparison with rugby is not a perfect one. Countries qualify for Olympic curling on the basis of their World championship performance. Home nations compete separately at the World Championships, but the IOC have an agreement that the Scotland team alone will gain points to qualify a British team. Selection for the Olympic team is open to all GB curlers, but considering that curling is not played to any serious level outside of Scotland, the GB team is inevitably filled with Scots.

This isn't quite the same as with rugby sevens.
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Post by yappysnap on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 10:10 am

TJ wrote:I thought the team was supposed to be 7s players only - not 15s drafted in

No

Players who've played in specified 7's tournaments eg. the world series or a special 7's invitational event (basically for 15's players).

A few 15's players i'd like to see at the invitational if it ever happens:
England - Wade, Croft, Clifford, OLH, Hughes
Wales - Tipuric, North, M Morgan, Henson
Scotland - Hogg, Visser

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Post by Hazel Sapling on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 10:55 am

yappysnap wrote:
TJ wrote:I thought the team was supposed to be 7s players only - not 15s drafted in

No

Players who've played in specified 7's tournaments eg. the world series or a special 7's invitational event (basically for 15's players).

A few 15's players i'd like to see at the invitational if it ever happens:
England - Wade, Croft, Clifford, OLH, Hughes
Wales -  Tipuric, North, M Morgan, Henson
Scotland - Hogg, Visser

Even though Visser's tackling has improved, he is a massive risk as he is still a defensive liability. Henson I don't think has the speed though North and Tipuric would both be really good. Wade would be lightning. Lawes would be interesting at 7s. A big, mobile lock who has played backrow and has a bit of pace.

From Scotland, Lee Jones (who has played a lot of 7s) would make a lot of sense. Bennett would do really well with his speed and vision but he has played a lot this season. Watson (a 7 in 15s) is a small, quick OS who would do well at this. Hogg would do well but, again, has played a lot this season.

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Post by fa0019 on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 11:37 am

yappysnap wrote:
TJ wrote:I thought the team was supposed to be 7s players only - not 15s drafted in

No

Players who've played in specified 7's tournaments eg. the world series or a special 7's invitational event (basically for 15's players).

A few 15's players i'd like to see at the invitational if it ever happens:
England - Wade, Croft, Clifford, OLH, Hughes
Wales -  Tipuric, North, M Morgan, Henson
Scotland - Hogg, Visser

Henson?

Not the tanned one surely

a) is he still alive and playing
b) is his game really suited to 7s?

or is it someone else

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 11:45 am

He plays for Bristol, saw him live vs Donny a couple of weeks ago. He was ok, but nothing special, playing at 10. Missed a fair few kicks (wouldn't have to worry) passing good. Wouldn't really have taken much notice if not for previous rep.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 2:15 pm

fa0019 wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Definitely agree with Visser - and Olly Lindsay-Hague has reportedly been released to the 7s squad. Walker would be an option but lacks the physicality to take on NZ or the Blitzbokke.

Croft would be good if he still has all his pace - I haven't seen enough of him recently to be sure. But the 15s forward that the 7s have expressed interest in is Clifford - who would be excellent but is also likely to feature heavily in Eddie Jones's plans for the summer. Lad's got a difficult choice to make... but I suspect that Eddie will be persuasive.

Am I right in thinking that the Northern Irish players (i.e. those with UK passports) were given the option to join GB or join Ireland and chose the latter?

Ireland doesn't have a team right?

In any case I don't think team GB would approach any players out of respect similar to that in Boxing. I think it would perhaps do their Ireland credentials a little harm if they did.

"A little harm" to their Ireland credentials is an understatement. In Seoul 88 two NI hockey players (Martin and Kirkwood) won gold with GB&NI, even though they normally played for Ireland who didn't qualify. It is clear that no such accommodation would be tolerated by the IRFU for a rugby equivalent.

NI players are in the invidious position of either representing their sovereign state and incurring the wrath of their employer, or representing a foreign state and incurring the wrath of their neighbours.

The dichotomy is a moot point as Ireland don't produce sprinters and so will never be good enough at sevens to qualify for the Olympics.

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Post by marty2086 on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 2:38 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:
fa0019 wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Definitely agree with Visser - and Olly Lindsay-Hague has reportedly been released to the 7s squad. Walker would be an option but lacks the physicality to take on NZ or the Blitzbokke.

Croft would be good if he still has all his pace - I haven't seen enough of him recently to be sure. But the 15s forward that the 7s have expressed interest in is Clifford - who would be excellent but is also likely to feature heavily in Eddie Jones's plans for the summer. Lad's got a difficult choice to make... but I suspect that Eddie will be persuasive.

Am I right in thinking that the Northern Irish players (i.e. those with UK passports) were given the option to join GB or join Ireland and chose the latter?

Ireland doesn't have a team right?

In any case I don't think team GB would approach any players out of respect similar to that in Boxing. I think it would perhaps do their Ireland credentials a little harm if they did.

"A little harm" to their Ireland credentials is an understatement. In Seoul 88 two NI hockey players (Martin and Kirkwood) won gold with GB&NI, even though they normally played for Ireland who didn't qualify. It is clear that no such accommodation would be tolerated by the IRFU for a rugby equivalent.

NI players are in the invidious position of either representing their sovereign state and incurring the wrath of their employer, or representing a foreign state and incurring the wrath of their neighbours.

The dichotomy is a moot point as Ireland don't produce sprinters and so will never be good enough at sevens to qualify for the Olympics.

Zebo, Healy, Gilroy and particularly Rory Scholes may disagree about producing sprinters

Ulster players would not be released to play for a GB team as they are contracted to be with their province as the Olympics fall at the end of pre season and the beginning of the season.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 3:32 pm

They may disagree - I hope they would, but if you took a similar four from the rest of the 6N and ran heats I don't know if any of them would reach the final.

In XVs that's not critical but compared to sevens specialists where raw pace is King, Ireland literally wouldn't be at the races.

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Post by fa0019 on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 3:57 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:They may disagree - I hope they would, but if you took a similar four from the rest of the 6N and ran heats I don't know if any of them would reach the final.

In XVs that's not critical but compared to sevens specialists where raw pace is King, Ireland literally wouldn't be at the races.

Pace is relative though right. Hickey was a olympic level sprinter right (well Ireland level) but he never seemed to be the fastest wing. Zebo for me would be a shoe in for most 7 sides. Has that lazy style that can unlock defences.

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Post by marty2086 on Thu 07 Apr 2016, 5:04 pm

fa0019 wrote:
The Great Aukster wrote:They may disagree - I hope they would, but if you took a similar four from the rest of the 6N and ran heats I don't know if any of them would reach the final.

In XVs that's not critical but compared to sevens specialists where raw pace is King, Ireland literally wouldn't be at the races.

Pace is relative though right. Hickey was a olympic level sprinter right (well Ireland level) but he never seemed to be the fastest wing. Zebo for me would be a shoe in for most 7 sides. Has that lazy style that can unlock defences.

Zebo once said Earls, Bowe and Payne were the fastest in the Irish squad and Rory Scholes covered 10metres a second in a game which is thought to be hard to beat

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