Navy Coach Helps Quins to Middlesex VIIs Cup

CPOPT Billy May,currently serving onboard HMS Illustrious and former Navy Sharks 7’s Coach, was invited to coach Guinness Premiership side, Harlequins in the Middlesex Charity 7’s on Sat 16 Aug, competing for the famous Russell Cargill Cup. The Tournament involved all 12 Guinness Premiership sides plus four invitited teams who this year were: Leeds Carnegie, Newport Gwent Dragons, Neath Swansea Ospreys and The British Army. The Harlequins squad captained by England winger David Strettle also included a wealth of English and overseas International talent including Nick Easter, Mike Brown(England), Chris Robshaw and Tom Guest (England Saxons), Epi Taione(Tonga), Wasai Luveniyali (Fiji), Gonzalo Tieisi (Argentina) not to mention 2 excellent Harlequins Academy players in Ollie Lindsay Hague and Rhys Howells. On the way to the final Quins beat Leeds Carnegie (27-0), Sale Sharks (29-14) and trophy holders Newcastle Falcons 21 - 12 in the semi finals. This left Harlequins with a final versus the 7’s specialists, The British Army. Though the Army have had a most successful sevens season and going in to the final were unbeaten in 2008, Quins never looked like losing in front of the 23,500 crowd. The 22 - 12 win was the first for Quins for 18 years and extends here lead as the most successful team at the Middlesex Sevens to 14. When asked how he felt Billy replied: “Considering we only had the one session together this morning the players showed their true class and teamwork, buying in to the tactics for each game and executing them. It has been an honour and a privilege to be part of this team today, certainly the pinnacle of my 7’s coaching journey to date, made all the more sweeter by beating the Army in the Final. I would like to take this chance to thank Dean Richards (DoR Harlequins) and Geraint Ashton Jones (DoR Navy Rugby) who gave me this opportunity and believed in my ability to deliver at the Elite level.”