September 21, 2020

Maples National Sevens Academy set for World Cup Training camp

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The Maples National Rugby Sevens Academy departed for Canada on July 4th for an intensive 19 day camp that will see the players play in three world class tournaments and undergo training from some of the world’s leading sevens coaches.

The squad, coaching and management team has already undergone strategic sessions under Dan Baugh a world renowned and leading consultant in fitness and conditioning training for Rugby, made possible with grants from the CIOC, Maples and Queensgate Bank and Trust. The week long strategic session led to a complete  re thinking of the way the Rugby Sevens program has been delivered in Cayman with the ultimate goal  to deliver similar world class programs as the top nations.

To further Dan’s work, Morgan Williams former professional Canadian sevens player, coach and captain will accompany the squad for the 19 days of the camp as well as the Rugby World Cup Qualifier tournament at the end of August. Morgan is also bringing in other national team sevens coaches to assist with the squads and managements development.

The camp starts on July 5th in Calgary Alberta where the squad will spend two days preparing for the Calgary Stampede Sevens on July 6th and 7th. The squad then travels to Victoria Island in British Columbia where they will reside in the world class University of Victoria.

The University has numerous pitches, gym’s, pools and training facilities and the main part of the camp will take place on the campus. The squad will be in four a day sessions from the 9th through the 12th before taking part in the Victoria International sevens alongside Fiji, Canada, USA and other major teams on July 14th. Part three of the camp will then run from the 15th through 19th as the squad prepares for the  third and toughest tournament in Vancouver which includes the FIJI WARDENS – Winners of 2011 Fiji Coral Coast Sevens featuring Joji Rakamate, IIia Tinai, Lepani Botia, Api Naiyabo, SEREVI featuring Ben Gollings from England and Emosi former Captain of Fiji National 7s, KENYA MWAMBA featuring Collins Injera, Humphrey Kayange, WINGS FIJIAN SELECT and the SOUTH SEAS BARBARIANs these teams are comprised totally of Word Sevens series professional players.

The squad returns home on the 23rd of July and the final squad of 12 to represent Cayman in the 2012 Rugby Sevens World Cup qualifiers to be held in Ottawa July 25th and 26th will be named on July 24th.

When asked about why Cayman need to travel and play in such tournaments Director of Rugby Richard Grizz Adams responded, ‘We have in the North American and Caribbean Rugby Association region, both Canada and the USA who are core teams in the World sevens series and have full time professional players and staff. We have to compete against them to qualify for tournaments outside of the region so that is the goal. Ultimately from the Americas region for the Olympics it will be one or two teams from the Americas as a continent this also includes, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Brazil. When you look at it in those terms we have a lot of ground to make up quickly and we need to start at a world class level in everything we do. Having Dan and Morgan involved is ensuring our coaches and players are gaining that ground and knowledge quickly and this is being handed on to the players.

For the players to see and compete against the best players in the world in these tournaments is also the fastest way for them and our younger developing squads to see just what it is going to take. Hopefully the end result will be that the management and players understand what it takes to play at this level and this will then pass down into the developing players at all ages and the whole level of Rugby in Cayman will once again kick start into new levels. After all the only thing stopping us from competing at these levels is not realizing the intensity we have to achieve here in Cayman when we are training and preparing.

We need to look to nations like Fiji, Samoa and Tonga where relatively small and remote nations have developed to be some of the best sevens nations in the World. For us Sevens is the game where Cayman can really look to make an impact on the world scene

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