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Sevens skipper tips Aussies to shine in Las Vegas

  
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2/11/2010
By ARU Media Unit


Australian Rugby Sevens captain Patrick McCutcheon says after two IRB Plate Final victories his youthful side is determined to improve and achieve a Cup semi-finals berth at the Las Vegas Sevens this weekend

 
Las Vegas is the fourth stop on the IRB Sevens World Series circuit where sixteen of the world’s best teams will battle it out at Sam Boyd Stadium from the 13-14 February.
 
After tournaments in Dubai, South Africa and Wellington; Australia are fifth on the Series standings with 30 points. New Zealand, the number one seed, currently top the table with 64 points after two tournament wins.
 
Australia has been drawn in Pool A in Las Vegas and will take on Guyana, France and fierce rivals New Zealand.
 
McCutcheon said the Australians are proud of their two Plate trophies, but are eager to improve on their Series best result of fifth.
 
“Our next team goal is to try and make the Cup semi-finals in Vegas, obviously we need to win the Cup quarter-final, which has proved difficult in the past,” McCutcheon said.
 
“If we can take the necessary steps forward, hopefully we’ll see the Australian team in the Cup final.”
 
Australia came from behind to topple reigning champions South Africa 26-22 and claim the Plate Trophy in Wellington in last weekend.
 
After their most outstanding performance of the Series, McCutcheon is looking for his team to take another step up.
 
“I think the more games we play the stronger we’re getting, I believe it’s just a matter of time before we start causing a few upsets,” McCutcheon said.
 
“As a young team we are still continuing to learn and gain the necessary skills for Sevens rugby.”
 
Robbie Coleman has joined the side as a replacement for the injured Dominic Shipperley (hand) and Australian Schoolboys representative Liam Gill will make his Sevens debut after being called into the squad to replace Nick Phipps (ankle).
 
Australian Sevens winger Clinton Sills is currently the fifth highest try-scorer with 15 five-pointers this Series.
 
The IRB Sevens World Series comes to Australia next month and will be staged at the historic Adelaide Oval from March 19-21.
 
Australian Sevens:  Pat McCutcheon (capt), James Stannard, Brian Sefanaia, Eddie Quirk, Liam Gill, Bernard Foley, Jacob Taylor, Brackin Karauria-Henry, Talalelei Gray, Kimami Sitauti, Clinton Sills, Robbie Coleman. Coach: Michael O’Connor
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