Formed 2004 ... Herts 7s U14 Runners-up 2005 ... North Herts U14 team, Herts Youth Games 2005 runners-up (coached by Letchworth)... Herts Superteams U14 Runners-up 2005 ... Herts SuperTeams "Fairplay" winners 2006 ... Rochford 10s U17 Champions 2006 ... East Midlands 10s U17 Runners-up 2007 ... East Midlands 10s U17 "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... National 10s U17 5th place and "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... Herts 7s U17 Plate runners-up 2007 ... National 7s U17 Plate winners 2007 ... RFU "President's XV" Award winners 2007 ... Herts Superteams winners 2007 ... Midlands 10s U18 Runners-up 2008 ... National 10s U18 4th place 2008 ... North Herts U11 team, Herts Youth Games 2008 runners-up (coached by Letchworth girls) ... London and SE 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2008 ... Herts 7s U18s runners-up 2008 ... National 7s U18s quarter-finalists 2008 ... Gloucester City 10s U18 Bowl runner-up (6th) 2009 ... Worthing 10s U18 Plate runner-up 2009 ... National 7s U18 Plate winners 2009... Worthing 10s U15 Plate winners 2010... Worthing 10s U18 Shield winners 2010... Herts 7s U15 and U18 Bowl runners-up 2010... National 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2010...

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

World Cup Sevens preview: Pool C

Pool C is possibly the most fascinating and unpredictable of all the groups. Uniquely it features four nations from four different continents who have never played each other at sevens before. In fact, apart from one game between Canada and Spain at the 2006 World Cup, they have never met at XVs either. It is also the only group where it is true to say that any team could qualify - and the bonus for the pool winner is to avoid New Zealand in the quarter finals.

Canada are the North American/Carribean champions and - at XVs - probably third in the world now. However, they had a disappointing San Diego tournament and the concern may be that their sevens team peaked too early. They should go through from this pool... but there are three huge banana skins ahead of them.

Brazil are the giants of South American rugby - so far ahead of anyone else that most nations consider it a triumph to merely score against them! The problem is that neither they - nor any other South American team - have ever played (at full strength) outside South America. So... who knows what they will be like (other than ovewhelmingly confident)?

Thailand are a similar mystery. The result of intensive training and planning, they came from no-where to almost win the Asian qualifier. However, the performance of other Asian teams would seem to indicate that outside their continent they are not likely to be a significant power.

Spain only qualified fourth from Europe, but won last month's Malaga warm-up, beating France in the final - they therefore seem to be hitting their best at just the right time. Spain have an excellent sevens record, including one European Championship, one runner-up, and one third place. They should qualify from the pool with Canada - and quite possibly in first place. 

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