Sydney University Football Club members Pat McCutcheon and Greg Jeloudev have been selected in the 12-man Australian squad to contest the for the 2015 UON Central Coast Sevens this weekend (October 24 and 25).
Sponsored by the University of Newcastle (UON), the CC7s is promoted as Australia’s premier sevens festival outside the world series.
The tournament, to be played at the Wyong Rugby League Club grounds, has attracted world-class teams from New Zealand, Fiji and United States as it is the final opportunity for selected players to press their case for national selection ahead of November’s Olympic Regional Qualifier in Auckland.
The Thunderbolts have been drawn in Pool B alongside Redrock (Fiji), Germany and Rangataua (New Zealand).
Thunderbolts coach Tim Walsh said the squad includes a nice blend of youth and experience.
“Everything we do as a group at the moment is ensuring we are in the best possible shape come the Olympic qualifier next month and the Central Coast Sevens is another important step on that process,” he said.
“The Central Coast Sevens is one of the highlights of the domestic Sevens calendar and we are fortunate to have it right on our doorstep. I know the boys are all looking forward to getting out there and putting on a good show for the fans.”
Meanwhile, the Sydney Stars will meet Brisbane City in a semi-final of the National Rugby Championship at Ballymore, Brisbane, on Saturday. Canberra Vikings and Melbourne Rising will meet in the other semi-final, with the winners to contest the 2015 grand final.
And in news from the Rugby World Cup in England, SUFC’s Australian representatives continue to perform well on the big stage, with five-eighth Bernard Foley landing a pressure penalty goal in the dying stages against Scotland to help Australia through to a semi-final against Argentina.
Second-rower Dean Mumm, backrower Ben McCalman and halfback Nick Phipps have been regulars in the starting line-up or off the bench, while fullback Israel Folau is expected to return from injury for the semi-final. Second-rower Will Skelton was unfortunately forced out of the tournament with injury in the second pool match.
National Rugby Championship – Round 9
Melbourne Rising 18 (Ben Meeham, Justin Marsters, Stacey Ili tries; Jack Debreczeni goal) defeated Sydney Stars 10 (Harry Jones, Jim Stewart tries) at Frankston Oval, Frankston, on Sunday.
Semi-Finals: Canberra Vikings v Melbourne Rising at Viking Park, Canberra on Friday, with 7.30pm kick-off.
Sydney Stars v Brisbane City at Ballymore, Brisbane, on Saturday, with a 7.30pm start.