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Perry Baker being examined by a trainer. Martin Seras Lima photo

USA Speedster Perry Baker is one of three candidates to win World Rugby's award for Men's Sevens Player of the Year. The winner will be named at the World Rugby's annual awards show in Monte Carlo next month. 

Baker led the HSBC Sevens World Series in tries (57) and points (285) last season. He was second in the world in tries at the end of 2016, with South Africa's Seabelo Senatla in the lead. Senatla left for Super Rugby midseason, though, and Baker raced past the rest of the field. In addition to excelling with ball in hand, Baker was tremendous in the air, helping the USA to the best restart retention rate on the Series.  

"I was nominated with the support of the other 6 guys on the field and my coaches as well," noted Baker in a press release. "Without them I wouldn't have this
opportunity. We work for each other out there."

The release also said that Baker, looking back on his pathway to the Eagles, wanted to thank his supporters in Brian Richardson with Daytona Beach Rugby and USA head coach Mike Friday, for their belief in his ability. "You can believe in yourself all day, but I wouldn't be here without these guys believing in me
and giving me the opportunity to play," he said. I'm very humbled."