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Carlin Isles is back in the United States visiting family in Ohio after leaving his contract with the Glasgow Warriors. The decision for Isles to come back to America and focus on 7s was a mutual one between the Warriors and Isles, whose goal since picking up a rugby ball has been to get to the Olympics.
“It would have been real difficult if I had stayed over there, and I’d been there for another eight, nine months and then have to come back and just focus on 7s and try to qualify for the Olympics” Isles told Rugbytoday.com.
“It would have been real hard, especially as a professional 15s player – to have to put in so much work and have to catch up and try to learn things, and I can’t really focus 100-percent on my main goal, which is the Olympics.”
Isles arrived in Scotland in March, never appearing in a first-side match with the Warriors, and ended up playing an awful lot of 7s. He did play in some club-side 15s games, but also helped Glasgow win Melrose 7s and Samurai, a premier invitation team, win the GB 7s series.
Samurai coach, and former England 7s and Kenya 7s coach, Mike Friday reached out to Isles on Twitter and recruited him to Samurai. The two hit it off, and Isles spent the last month training with Friday and the London Scottish. Friday, rumored to be in the mix for the USA 7s head coaching position, was the Scottish’s backs coach and signed on earlier this week as their director of rugby.
“He taught me a lot about how to utilize my gift and create space for other people,” said Isles of Friday.
“I’ve gained so much knowledge and skills in a lot of different areas that I may have been weak in. It just made me more aware, and space aware, and player aware, and knowing how to read the game and things like that. Between Glasgow and Mike Friday, mixing those two up together, I’ve never learned so much in my life.”
Isles has talked to USA Rugby CEO Nigel Melville and is planning to report to the Olympic Training Center, along with a whole host of other players, next week to begin preseason for the IRB 7s World Series. He, along with the rest of the American rugby population, is also eagerly awaiting the announcement of the new head coach.