Greg Called Up To England Sevens Squad

This week Navy centre Greg Barden has been training as part of Ben Ryan's England 26 man Sevens Squad. The squad will eventually be whittled down to 12 for the iRB World Series opening tournament in Dubai at the end of November. However Greg, like everyone in the squad, will also have an eye on the iRB Sevens World Cup which will also be held in Dubai in March. To cap a very successful week for Greg he has also been selected for his first start of the season for Bristol, away to Montpellier, in the European Challenge Cup. RFU England Sevens Press Release: England Sevens begin route to the World Cup England Sevens Coach Ben Ryan has today (Thursday) announced his training squad ahead of the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2009 in Dubai (March 5-7). The 26 man squad who meet early next week features last season’s England Sevens Edinburgh finalists Tom Biggs (Leeds Carnegie), Ollie Phillips (Newcastle Falcons), Micky Young (Newcastle Falcons), Jack Adams (Gloucester Rugby), Kevin Barrett (Exeter Chiefs), Ollie Cook (Sedgley Park) and Chris Cracknell (Exeter Chiefs). The 26 will be looking to prove themselves to gain selection for Ryan’s 12 man squad who will travel to Dubai to take part in the Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens (November 28 & 29, 2008) which is the first leg of the IRB Sevens World Series. Said Ryan, “The Sevens World Cup only comes around every four years and these players have the opportunity to be part of something special. England haven’t won the Sevens World Cup since 1993 so our focus from day one is to lift the Melrose Cup. “We have some very exciting prospects in this squad with a mix of youth and experience. We have some players missing from this training squad that will be available for selection for the World Series and World Cup Uche Odouza (Suntory Sungoliath), Andy Vilk (Benetton Treviso) and Ben Gollings (Rugby Gold Coast) who all took part in Edinburgh last season. “The players who took part in that final in Edinburgh will know that was just the tip of the iceberg. England’s sights are firmly set on a winning season which kicks off in Dubai in November.” England Sevens 26 man training squad: Jack Adams (Gloucester Rugby) Greg Barden (Royal Navy / Bristol Rugby) Kevin Barrett (Exeter Chiefs) Tom Biggs (Leeds Carnegie) Chris Cracknell (Exeter Chiefs) Rhys Crane (Bath Rugby) Ollie Cook (Sedgely Park) Isoa Damudamu (Army) Carl Fearns (Sale Sharks) Ollie Frost (Worcester Warriors) Charlie Gower (London Irish) Matt Jess (Exeter Chiefs) Dan Norton (Gloucester Rugby) Josh Ovens (Bath Rugby) Ollie Phillips (Newcastle Falcons) James Rodwell (Moseley) Tony Roques (Cornish All Blacks) Charlie Simpson-Daniel (Gloucester) David Tait (Sale Sharks) Guy Thompson (Gloucester Rugby) Adam Thompstone (London Irish) Matt Turner (Bristol Rugby) Rob Vickerman (Leeds Carnegie) Tim Visser (Newcastle Falcons) Mark Woodrow (Pertemps Bees) Micky Young (Newcastle Falcons) Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens 2008 England fixtures: Pool D Friday November 28, 2008 England v Portugal, ko 12.04pm local time (GMT +4) England v USA, ko 5.00pm local time (GMT +4) Fiji v England, ko 7.56pm local time (GMT +4) To follow England Sevens go to Ends