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The flyhalf question continues to be a question. Nese Malifa is technically healthy but has to be taken care of since he is just back from a series of injuries. That means that Coach Eddie O’Sullivan is likely to use backups at points in the Churchill Cup and the summer. Tai Enosa seems to have done well enough, and Volney Rouse certainly improved his play at this position.
Center is a bigger question than ever, but less so because of lack of players and more so because there are so many. Roland Suniula is looking better and better in 15s and in 7s, and even took some time at flyhalf. With Suniula’s form improving and Chris Wyles playing some at center at Saracens, it’s a crowded field.
Eric Fry seems to have spent the last four months bulking up and turning himself into a prop who looks like a prop, not a converted flanker/lock. A quick look at one of the team’s photos from camp (see right) shows him looking very different. It’s a testament to Fry’s hard work that he’s converted himself this way. That makes for some big-time competition this summer for a limited number of spots.
Scrumhalf remains very crowded, and with Shalom Suniula doing well at camp and Robbie Shaw in good form in the UK, there are now at least four scrumhalves in the mix.
USA Rugby’s announcement left Danny LaPrevotte off the list of players invited, but in fact LaPrevotte is still in consideration for the Eagles, he just couldn’t get time off work. Don’t be surprised if you see the SFGG flanker in an Eagle jersey at some point.
We at RUGBYMag.com are getting the distinct impression that we will not have a distinct 1st 15 this year. O’Sullivan does seem to be the type to change his lineup due to matchups, and with some depth at a few positions, he will attempt to use that depth, mixing combinations to best suit his purposes.