The captains of the 16 nations set to contest the penultimate round of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2018 in London this weekend gathered together ahead of what promises to be an exhilarating two days of rugby sevens action at Twickenham Stadium on 2-3 June.
This year’s series has proved to be the most competitive ever with just 37 points separating the top four teams in the standings and five different winners in the first five rounds. It is all to play for in London this weekend as the race for the series title heats up ahead of the grand finale in Paris on 8-10 June.
Following successive victories over the last three rounds Fiji enter the HSBC London Sevens with high confidence and a four-point lead over South Africa, who are closely followed by New Zealand in third and Australia in fourth at the top of the table.
“To come to London on top of the standings is a massive boost for us, it gives us another thing to push for to win the series,” said Fiji captain Jerry Tuwai. “We always take one game at a time and we respect all the teams because nowadays they are all really hard to play against. It is very close with South Africa, New Zealand and Australia so we will not rest, we will keep on pushing.”
This weekend’s event marks the 18th year of the London Sevens and will see a special celebration of the English capital’s diversity. “We love coming to London because of Twickenham and playing in this massive stadium” said Tuwai. “We love playing here because we have a lot of Fijian supporters in London and we want everyone to come and watch.”
Reigning London Sevens champions Scotland have run out winners at Twickenham for the last two years and will be aiming to make it a hat-trick in 2018. Reflecting on their past success Scotland captain Scott Riddell said: “The last two years have been something amazing to be part of and we have some very fond memories of real career highlights so far. Every game was an absolute battle last year but we managed to end up on the right side of it.”
“We are in a tough group, but every game is tough and we’ll look to impose our game on the opposition,” added Riddell. “It’s always good to have a raucous crowd at Twickenham, it doesn’t come much better. It’s probably the biggest crowd that we get to experience all year and we’ll really raise our game for that.”