England Save Best Til Last

A good first day in the office of International rugby was capped by England topping their pool at the Dubai leg of the iRB World Series Sevens. Josh has so far played in all three games with Greg contributing in two. Press release below is from Jessica Chamber of the RFU and the photograph is of Army Sevens expert Isoa Damudamu. Picture courtesey of Getty Images. England finish top of their group this evening after a confident display against Fiji at the Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens. A disallowed try didn’t dampen England’s spirits as they scored four tries with Micky Young, Uche Oduoza and Isoa Damudamu flying over the line and captain Ollie Phillips adding four conversions. England had a slow start waiting until the fourth minute to score their first try which came from an England scrum, Kevin Barrett threw out to Damu who tore through the Fiji defence for his third try of the day. Powerful forward Chris Cracknell added to England’s tally minutes later but it was disallowed because of a forward pass. The scores at the break were 0-14. After half time England were well into their stride striking in the second minute with a try from Phillips from an England line out. Fiji answered back moments later with their only try, but failed to convert. Substitute Tom Biggs had a great run that led to Damu receiving the ball in the last play of the match. It was a chip and chase that saw Damu fly over the line for his fourth try of the day. Coach Ben Ryan said, “It was a fine balance and we just managed to get it today. We got the ball early and we knew even against teams like Fiji if you can just hold onto the ball you break down their shape, you need the right guys to make the right decisions and we took our chances. “As a management group we’ve stood back a little and let them manage themselves, we told them, you’ve got to go out there and enjoy yourselves and start playing through their lines, start looking for offloads. When you’re confident and hitting the right lines sometimes those offloads come off. Today has been a real team effort.” England face Argentina in the cup quarter final at 11.30am (GMT, 7.30am) on Saturday November 29. England: Isoa Damudamu (Army), Rob Vickerman (Leeds Carnegie), Uche Oduoza (Suntory, Japan), Ollie Phillips (Captain, Newcastle Falcons), Josua Drauniniu (Exeter Chiefs/Royal Navy), Kevin Barrett (Exeter Chiefs), Chris Cracknell (Exeter Chiefs). Replacements: Tom Biggs (Leeds Carnegie), Micky Young (Newcastle Falcons), Greg Barden (Bristol Rugby/Royal Navy). England scorers: Tries: Damu (2), Oduoza, Young Conversions: Phillips (4) Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens, November 28 & 29 England results: Pool D Friday November 28 England 31-7 Portugal England 24-10 USA Fiji 5 v 28 England