For Immediate Release
May 11, 2011
O’SULLIVAN PLEASED WTH DOMESTIC PLAYER CAMP
CHULA VISTA, Calif. – Eagles Head Coach, Eddie O’Sullivan, was extremely pleased with his squad at the recent camp held at the Olympic Training Center (OTC) in San Diego. The camp was the first for the Eagles fifteens team in their preparations for the 2011 Rugby World Cup in September.
During the camp, held from May 4-8, the players had several chances to impress O’Sullivan, the most obvious opportunity being a controlled scrimmage on the Saturday afternoon.
“It was a very successful camp for us. The players really applied themselves, with us getting seven very tough sessions done between Thursday and Sunday,” O’Sullivan said.
With the Rugby World Cup only months away, this domestic camp proved a valuable selection tool for O’Sullivan and his coaching staff.
Newly appointed technical experts Fiore Screnci (Scrum Coach) and Chris O’Brien (Kicking Coach) had a chance to work with the 35 players, while Matt Sherman (Backs Coach), Dave Hodges (Forwards Coach) and Mike Tolkin (Defensive Coach) imparted their expertise to the group.
“The work ethic was excellent and we got a lot of quality reps done. We also got a lot of information that we didn’t have before, particularly some of the new players,” said O’Sullivan, “The next job now is to pick the Churchill Cup pool.”
The Eagles will travel to England in June to compete in the 2011 Churchill Cup, where they will take on the England Saxons (June 4) and Tonga (June 8), before the Elimination round (June 18).
The Eagles’ Churchill Cup opponents will be challenging and so too will be their training and match schedule.
“We hit the ground on the 30th of May and have to play on the 4th of June.
It’s then a very short turn-around till we play Tonga,” said O’Sullivan.
The coach will select his Churchill Cup team over the next few weeks.
The Eagles have plenty of contracted overseas players who were unavailable for this recent domestic camp, and might find themselves being rested next month to recover from grueling professional seasons.
“In terms of players, we may rest some of overseas players, who have had a very long season and keep them fresh for August and September. And that will create opportunities for players we may want to see more of.”
Some players who attended the Eagles fifteens camp will likely travel with the USA Men’s Sevens team to the UK as they compete in the HSBC Sevens World Series in London (May 21-22) and Edinburgh (May 28-29).
O’Sullivan ended the camp by thanking the players for their efforts, noting that the door could open for those players not selected initially as injury, dips or peaks in form, and a number of other factors may shake things up in O’Sullivan’s selections.
USA EAGLES DOMESTIC PLAYER CAMP | MAY 4 – 8 | CHULA VISTA, CALIF.
Chris Baumann (Glendale), Chris Biller (San Francisco Golden Gate), Will Brazier (Old Blue RFC), Ryan Chapman (Utah Warriors), Todd Clever (Suntory Sungoliath, Japan), Pat Danahy (Life), James Denise (New York Athletic Club), Tala Esera (Tama Laie Lions Rugby Club), Eric Fry (Las Vegas Blackjacks), Tom Katzfey (New York Athletic Club), Alec Parker (Gentleman of Aspen), Brendan Purcell (Old Mission Beach Athletic Club), Ben Nelson (Kansas City Blues), Phil Thiel (Life), John van der Giessen (Utah Warriors), Jon Vitale (Chicago Lions), Jesse Witkowicki (Old Mission Beach Athletic Club)
Matthew Byrd (Utah Warriors), Paul Emerick (Life), Tai Enosa (Belmont Shore), Colin Hawley (Olympic Club), Jordan Kohn (Unattached), Kelly Kolberg (Dallas Reds), Nese Malifa (Glendale), Folau Niua (San Francisco Golden Gate), Tui Osborne (Life), Mike Palefau (Utah Warriors), Mike Petri (New York Athletic Club), Mile Pulu (San Francisco Golden Gate), Volney Rouse (San Francisco Golden Gate), Andrew Suniula (Chicago Griffins), Roland Suniula (Boston Rugby), Shalom Suniula (USA Men’s Sevens/Brisbane), Zack Test (Unattached), Pate Tuilevuka (Old Puget Sound)
Unavailable due to injury: Troy Hall (New York Athletic Club), Taylor Mokate (Univ. of Oklahoma)
Selected but unavailable: Brian Daniels (Glendale), Matt Kelly (Chicago Lions), Danny LaProvette (San Francisco Golden Gate), Samu Manoa (San Francisco Golden Gate)
Considered but unavailable: Danny Barrett (University of California - Berkeley), Shaun Davies (Brigham Young University), Cameron Dolan (Life University), Seamus Kelly (University of California - Berkeley), Duncan Kelm (San Diego State Univ.), Don Pati (Univ. of Utah), Leonard Peters (Gentleman of Aspen), Ryan Roundy (Brigham Young University), Blaine Scully (University of California - Berkeley)