Two Scots selected in GB U18 7s side
Two Scots were today named in a 12-man Team GB U18 7s squad for the Youth Olympic Games Qualifying event in Panevezys, Lithuania this Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 May.
Outside backs Rufus McLean [right] (Merchiston Castle School) and Femi Sofolarin [right, below] (Dulwich College / Harlequins) have been named alongside seven English and three Welsh players, in a side led by Head Coach Russell Earnshaw.
McLean and Sofolarin were part of the unbeaten Scotland U18 side that recorded wins over Ireland, England and France in the U18 Six Nations Festival in Wales and now have the chance to follow in the footsteps of Team GB 7s medallists Mark Bennett and Mark Robertson, who collected silver at Rio 2016.
McLean said: “I’m buzzing. I’m reality excited to be called up to be part of it.
“I’m looking forward to testing myself on an international scale, especially against different players around Europe. I’m just so excited to part of it.”
Sofolarin added: “It’s really exciting. I’m really looking forward to the weekend and continuing to the success of the U18 Six Nations campaign and bringing that into the sevens.
“Most of my sevens of rugby has been at school so this will be another great opportunity to use my pace, which is definitely a side of my game I’m looking to use to exploit.”
A total of 12 teams will participate in the tournament with the winning team qualifying for the Buenos Aires Youth Olympic Games, which takes place in this October.
Team GB U18 7s are drawn in Pool C and will face Georgia, Belgium and Lithuania on day one.
A selection camp for the qualifying tournament was held at Bisham Abbey on last month where 24 prospective players were invited to an interactive day of coaching and on-and-off-pitch skills sessions to identify the talent among the group.
Team GB 7s U18 Head Coach, Russell Earnshaw, said: “It was extremely difficult to pick 12 players from the group of 24 but we’re really excited by the squad that will represent U18 Team GB in Lithuania with the aim of securing a place at the Youth Olympics.
“We’re really pleased with the way that these players came together at the selection camp and are looking forward to seeing how they perform against some very talented European teams.
“This is a unique opportunity for the squad which will provide them with many great learning experiences as they continue to keep learning and developing as players.”
Team GB U18 7s squad for Youth Olympic Games Qualifiers
Blake Boyland (England)
Max Cunnington (Wales)
Tom Curtis (England)
Josh Hodge (England)
Jay Jones (Wales)
Tony Lamerton (Wales)
Rufus McLean (Scotland)
Will Montgomery (England)
Tom Roebuck (England)
Toby Smith (England)
Joe Wallace (England)
Femi Sofolarin (Scotland)