Scotland 7s head coach, Stephen Gemmell, has today named his squad of 12 to travel to Moscow for the forthcoming Rugby World Cup 7s, which will take place between Friday 28 and Sunday 30 June.
One exile in Jim Thompson, who currently plays full-back for London Scottish and who was involved in last weekend’s FIRA-AER tournament in Lyon, makes the squad while the remaining 11 are made up of full time Scotland 7s players.
Colin Gregor returns as captain, for his third Rugby World Cup 7s, with Scotland’s top try scorer Andrew Turnbull also making his third outing. This will also be Scott Riddell, Colin Shaw and Thompson’s second Rugby World Cup 7s.
Making their first trip to a Rugby World Cup 7s are Mark Robertson, Michael Fedo, Struan Dewar, Alex Glashan, Chris Dean, Michael Maltman and James Johnstone.
Gemmell said: “We’ve selected an experienced squad with the majority of the players contracted to the sevens programme. We have also brought in Jim who will give us an extra option at ten.
“We have gone for six forwards and six backs, with Chris Dean, able to operate in both positions.
“It’s an exciting opportunity for all involved to be going to a Rugby World Cup 7s and in a place like Moscow. We have a big challenge ahead of us in our group with Russia, Japan and South Africa and only the winner going through to the Cup competition.
“In order to compete we will need to impose our game for 14 minutes of every fixture we play.”
“The Rugby World Cup 7s is a really important part of our programme. It is 13 months out from the Commonwealth Games and the starting point for considering selection. Not only that, it’s a very special event that only comes round every four years.”
Captain, Colin Gregor, said: “As always it is a huge honour to represent my country and an even greater honour to be captain at a Rugby World Cup 7s.
“We go into this competition having secured our core status in the HSBC Sevens World Series, so now it’s time to go out a give a reflection of ourselves in a World Cup.
“There is always something really special about competing in a competition like this, it has a different vibe to a World Series event and there are 24 teams rather than 16, so there’s also increased competition
“It will be important for us to go out and perform to the level we’re capable of and seize the moment. This will be the last Rugby World Cup 7s before the Olympics replaces it, so it truly is a once in a lifetime opportunity for everyone.”
Scotland 7s will open their Rugby World Cup 7s campaign, where they will compete in Group B, against Japan on Friday 28 June at 7.36pm (local-time).
They will then complete their group against hosts Russia at 1.02pm and then South Africa at 7.16pm on Saturday 29 June (both times local).
Scotland 7s squad to compete at the Rugby World Cup 7s at Luzhniki Sports Complex between Friday 28 and Sunday 30 June 2013: Scott Riddell (Scotland 7s), Michael Fedo (Scotland 7s), Struan Dewar (Scotland 7s), Alex Glashan (Scotland 7s EDP), Colin Gregor (captain) (Scotland 7s), Chris Dean (Scotland 7s EDP), Andrew Turnbull (Scotland 7s), Colin Shaw (Scotland 7s), Jim Thompson (London Scottish), Michael Maltman (Scotland 7s), Mark Robertson (Scotland 7s) and James Johnstone (Scotland 7s).