The 2024 Paris Olympic Games has had a recent bolstering of rugby union star-power, as two of the world’s top talents get set to run out on the Rugby Sevens circuit. Wallabies legend Michael Hooper and France maestro Antoine Dupont have both expressed their desires to chase Olympic gold.
Arguably the most physically enduring version of rugby, sevens is played on a full pitch in a true test of fitness, skill but most of all, pace. Speed is paramount to success in rugby sevens, with an abundance of space, the circuit is lit up by the top international speedsters as they ignite the afterburners.
Fiji are the current gold medal holders in men’s rugby sevens, with New Zealand taking silver and Argentina claiming bronze from the Tokyo Olympics. Fiji and New Zealand also claimed medals in the women’s tournament, yet it was New Zealand taking gold, France claiming silver, and Fiji bringing home the bronze medals. For both the men’s and women’s sides, it was a case of so close yet so far for Team GB back in Japan.
Both the men’s and women’s Team GB rugby sevens sides came finished in fourth place, after defeats in the bronze medal matches. The recent Sevens additions of Hooper and Dupont got us thinking, and we pieced together the Ultimate Rugby Sevens squad for the Team GB Men’s Rugby Sevens side.
Here are RUCK’s picks, for a Team GB Rugby Sevens squad, made up of England, Scotland and Wales stars.
1. Sione Tuipulotu (Scotland and Glasgow Warriors)
Starting off in the forward three, we have selected Scotland centre Sione Tuipulotu to start off our squad. Tuipulotu is an excellent all-rounder in Gregor Townsend’s side, as he brings both the physical prowess and technical skillset that optimises rugby sevens. Tuipulotu would bring an explosive first step into contact, and the handling ability to distribute offloads to the supporting options.
2. Jac Morgan (Wales and Ospreys)
The only out-and-out forward in our dream GB Sevens starting side, Wales captain Jac Morgan possess unbelievable pace for a back-rower. The Osprey has impressed in ever appearence he’s made for Warren Gatland’s side, and brings a resolved defensive approach to the squad. Morgan rarely misses a tackle, and in the open-field frenzy of sevens rugby, making your hits count is more important than ever. Also, the 23-year-old never stops working, with his unrelenting fitness another string to his sevens bow.
3. Duhan van der Merwe (Scotland and Edinburgh)
Scotland’s titanic winger, Duhan van der Merwe would be an excellent fit in rugby sevens. Look no further than his unstoppable solo try in the 2023 Six Nations against England, to see what individual brilliance the South African born winger brings to the fray. The Edinburgh man would be a revered opponent on the Sevens circuit, that would take some serious stopping when he hits full gear.
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