Head of England Sevens Simon Amor has named a 20-man squad for the 2018/19 season which will include the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series and Rugby Europe Sevens Grand Prix Series.
This season carries added significance in that it is the qualifying year for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, as with Rio 2016, England is the nominated nation to qualify Team GB for the games.
The 2018/19 England Men’s Sevens squad is split into senior, academy and university players. The experienced senior set-up features five Olympic silver medallists from Rio 2016 in Dan Bibby, Phil Burgess, Tom Mitchell, Ollie Lindsay-Hague and all-time leading try scorer Dan Norton.
Additionally, these five players all contributed to England’s bronze medal success at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games alongside Richard de Carpentier, Alex Davis, Mike Ellery, Harry Glover and Ethan Waddleton who are all named in the squad for the forthcoming season.
England ended their 2017/18 campaign with a second place finish at the Rugby World Cup Sevens where all of the aforementioned players, with the exception of Bibby and Waddleton - who were unavailable due to injury - represented their country alongside Will Muir to take home a silver medal, who will also remain with England for 2018/19.
Will Edwards will form part of the core senior group of players this season as he progresses from the England Sevens Academy, and Tom Bowen will remain an integral member of the senior set-up after overcoming injuries last season which hampered his Commonwealth and World Cup ambitions.
“With a number of experienced players remaining with the team and some great young talent joining the programme we are excited about the season ahead,” said Amor.
“The way that the World Cup squad performed in San Francisco in July gives us a huge amount of confidence and enthusiasm as we build towards our first World Series tournament in Dubai and begin our preparation for Olympic qualification.
“Every team is going to be aiming for a spot in the top spot on this season’s World Series and with quality of sevens increasing year-on-year it’s going to be a challenge that we will relish. We are very clear on what we need to do to achieve this and a huge part of that comes down to consistently demonstrating the right attitude and effort across the entire squad.”
England Men's Sevens squad for 2018/19
Jamie Barden, Dan Bibby, Tom Bowen, Phil Burgess, Alex Davis, Richard De Carpentier, Will Edwards, Mike Ellery, Harry Glover*, Ben Harris, Charlie Hayter**, Ollie Lindsay-Hague, Charlton Kerr, Tom Mitchell, Will Muir, Dan Norton, Ryan Olowofela, James Rodwell**, Femi Sofolarin, Ethan Waddleton