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The Rio Olympics are history for rugby sevens. The Games showcased the sport to a global television audience for the first time.
The world community congratulates Fiji Men on their gold medal, the first one ever for the Island nation, a much deserved tribute to the country’s sevens preeminence. And, also praise for the Australian Women who dominated the 2015/2016 five nation sevens circuit, generating 94 total points, outpacing second place New Zealand with 80.
Both Fiji and Australia produced gold medal victories with multiple try scorers, a testament to depth and unselfish play,
With the Japan 2020 Olympics four-years away, it’s time to reflect on the USA’s men’s and women’s sevens future that commences in Dubai on December 2, 2016 at the HSBC World Rugby Series start. (Cape Town is the week after on December 10,)
Foremost for the men is whether members of the Olympic team will be awarded professional contracts to play fifteens. Will Baker and Isles follow the Eagle Ngwenya as speedy wingers in Europe? What about Wyles and Hughes? Will the former return to the Saracens?
Will Mike Friday continue as coach?
All questions to be answered soon.
And if Isles and Baker depart, are there other fast American sprinters with or without football experience who want to make the crossover into rugby sevens?
The women sevens team could also lose players to the Eagle fifteen squad, especially since the next Women’s Rugby World Cup occurs next August 2017 in Ireland. Will the Women’s team experiment with Jessica Javelet on the wing?
In net, the 2016 Olympics have ended, and now it is time to consider the season ahead both for sevens and fifteens. Many years of rugby before Japan in 2020.