Marine Barden in England VIIs Training Squad

Navy centre, Cpl Greg Barden, has been selected as part of the England VIIs training squad. Greg who made his England debut last season will be hoping to build on last season's performances and be part of another successful iRB World Series with England. However before he can start thinking about the VIIs Greg knows that the impending fifth Babcock Commonwealth Cup will require his full attention. Though South Africa have had to pull out there will still be much close competition from the Kiwis and Aussies. In fact all three competition games will be more than just another rugby match. The first game in the competition will be a cross Tasman encounter which whatever the sport is always fiercely contested. The second game sees the Royal Navy seeking to put matters right following their defeat by the Royal New Zealand Navy at the last Commonwealth Cup whilst the final game continues the British Aussie rivalry as so evocatively captured by the Ashes. All three matches are at Brickfields, Plymouth and the RAN and RNZN will also be playing matches against a Navy President's XV. The President's XV will showcase some of the emerging talent from the Navy and the Commands with one or two older hands in place to maintain good order! As Ben Ryan put it when looking forward with England VII- Exciting Times Ahead. Full RFU Press Release below Ryan - Exciting times ahead for England Sevens England Sevens coach Ben Ryan believes a new era is dawning for world rugby and is excited by the possibilities for his squad this season. With the decision on whether to include rugby sevens in the 2016 Olympic Games due next Friday (9 Oct) Ryan is determined to continue the momentum his squad built last season by retaining ten of the players who reached finals in Dubai, Wellington, San Diego and London. Ben Gollings (Unattached), Kevin Barrett (Saracens) and the Army's Isoa Damudamu are amongst the experienced ten and will be joined by England Under 20s winger Christian Wade who will be hoping to earn his first sevens cap this year. Said Ryan, "The IRB Sevens World Series gets more competitive and exciting every year. The Olympic decision is days away and this additional possibility has already added to the promise of a new era in world rugby and sevens. "If you stand still at the moment, you tend to get left behind by the other nations so we have worked very hard at continuing the momentum gained from reaching four finals out of the eight last year. Many of the squad have been retained - ten that have appeared in finals last year - and additional players include some from the unbeaten U18 side and JWC U20 finalists. "The fitness standards have also risen, with minimum standards now being enforced across the board and some fantastic partnerships being developed with the RFU and other world class facilities and bodies in the UK. We all know what a hugely competitive but rewarding season this could be and can't wait for it all to start in earnest." England Sevens training squad 2009/10 Jake Abbott (Worcester) David Akinluyi (Unattached) Greg Barden (Royal Navy) Kevin Barrett (Saracens) Chris Brightwell (Birmingham & Solihull) Dan Caprice (Blackheath) Isoa Damudamu (Army) Ben Gollings (Unattached) Jamie Hearn (Saracens) Oliver Lindsay-Hague (Harlequins) Dan Norton (Bristol Rugby) Uche Oduoza (Newcastle Falcons) Ollie Phillips (Stade Francais) SimonPitfield (Unattached) Tom Powell (Cambridge RFU) James Rodwell (Moseley RFC) Nick Royle (Fylde Rugby) Charlie Simpson-Daniel (Gloucester Rugby) Christian Wade (Wasps) Matt Turner (Bristol Rugby) Matt Williams (Unattached) More players will be added post October training camp. IRB Sevens World Series fixtures 2009/10 Dubai 4-5 December South Africa 11-12 December New Zealand 5-6 February USA 13-14 February Australia 20-21 March Hong Kong 26-28 March England 22-23 May Scotland 29-30 May