Scotland kick-off the HSBC Sevens World Series in Queensland on Saturday with new head coach Phil Greening determined to change perceptions about the country that gave the shortened game to the world.
Greening will watch his charges take on Fiji, hosts Australia and Tonga in the Gold Coast Sevens, part of the glittering international series which is also played out in Dubai, South Africa, Wellington, Las Vegas, Hong Kong, Japan, Glasgow and London throughout the course of the season.
Tickets are already on sale for the Emirates Airline Glasgow 7s, which will take place at Scotstoun Stadium, Glasgow on the weekend of 4 and 5 May 2013. You can buy your tickets at www.glasgow7s.com.
Scotland arrived on the Gold Coast last week and during their acclimatisation have had hit-outs against Canada and New Zealand. Today their final preparations were conducted in weather rather closer to home, overcast and showers!
Greening told www.scottishrugby.org: “I think we’re in a good place just now but I’m really struck by how every country has stepped up massively and is really investing in their sevens programme.
“For us this tournament is an element of fact-finding to see exactly where we are and where we want to improve.
“We are meeting teams in our pool who are at the top end, not just in terms of being core teams but also with aspirations to win the series.
Scotland have been regarded as a ‘nice’ team in the series and what I’m looking for is for that perception to change. I want people to know they have played against a Scotland team who have players who want to battle for everything. If we get that, it’s probably a good starting place for us
All 12 players in the squad are available for selection and Greening describes the competition for places as intense and is pleased with the example being set in training of some of the younger charges, Chris Dean, Alex Glashan and Peter Jericevich.
Scotland 7s captain, Colin Gregor, on the first tournament of the HSBC Sevens World Series
Scotland 7s will take-on Fiji (12.42pm local-time), Australia (4.20pm local-time) and Tonga (6.08pm local-time) in pool B on day one at the Gold Coast 7s, which takes place on Saturday (13 October). The knockout stages follow on Sunday (14 October).
Scotand 7s squad for the Gold Coast 7s: Chris Dean (Scotland 7s EDP), Michael Fedo (Scotland 7s), Rory Hughes (Scotland 7s EDP), *Peter Jericevich (Ayr), Colin Gregor (Scotland 7s) (captain), Mark Robertson (Scotland 7s), Andrew Turnbull (Scotland 7s), Michael Maltman (Scotland 7s), Colin Shaw (Scotland 7s), Alex Glashan (Scotland 7s EDP), James Fleming (Scotland 7s) and * Liam Draycott (Currie).
*sportscotland institute supported player
The Gold Coast is nine hours ahead of BST.