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Between now and December 10 they will cover over 19,000 miles in the air, and play three six-game tournaments.
Normally the World Series is four groups of two tournaments, with breaks between those groups. This year, with nine tournaments, the series starts with three in a row.
“Yes it will be tough,” said USA prop Matt Hawkins. “On Sunday after the tournament you’re really tired and sore. And playing three will be something we, and every other team, will have to deal with.”
What helps the USA is the ease into the jet lag. Dubai has often been a tough tournament for the Eagles in part because the city is 12 hours different from the OTC in Chula Vista. Handling three, four or five hours of time difference isn’t easy, but it’s doable.
Twelve hours is extremely tough, as it means you are playing at 2pm and your body think it’s 2am and that you should be sound asleep.
This new schedule has the Eagles handling a six-hour different (actually 18 hours, but it works out the same) in Brisbane. Then they deal with another six-hour difference going from Australia to Dubai.
“That does make it easier, but what makes it harder will be the [7,500-mile] flight from Brisbane to Dubai,” said Hawkins. “You’ve just played in a tournament and you need to recover from that, and to then be on a plane for so long is tough. But our staff will help us get prepared, and we just have to make sure we’re moving as much as we can.”