Five sides; SX10, Miami Sun, London Royals, Ohio Aviators and Asia Pacific Dragons have named their final squads for the World 10s Series opener scheduled for this weekend in Bermuda.
Rhinos and Phoenix are yet to confirm their final squads. Cape Town Based SX10 which will be led by Frankie Horne has Kenya 7s stars Collins Injera, Captain Andrew Amonde, Oscar Dennis, Willy Ambaka who have all linked up with the side in Bermuda.
Other top stars in the squad include Blitzboks star Cecil Afrika, JP Du Plessis, Marzuq Maaman, Thinus Van Zyl, Frikkie De Beerm, Harry McNulty,Tienie Burger and Gary Porter.
Commenting on his selection Horne said: “We have gone for an all-African affair, pretty much, just to give the African boys an opportunity. We have a portion of our players coming from the Kings and we also have a few guys from the Kenya Sevens set-up.
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“A lot of the guys have been begging for this opportunity and should be fairly fit. This is the tournament that the guys have needed, it’s the injection that rugby has needed.
“The pro set-up of 10s is a bit of a sleeping giant. It gives guys contracted opportunities to play professionally. Also, being in the second half of the year, it’s perfect for the sevens guys as well as the guys from America’s Major League Rugby. It opens up opportunities.”
The format for the series was adjusted to accommodate the seven franchises participating.
The first two tournaments, set for 24 October, will adopt league format, with each team playing each other twice across the weekend. The team with the most wins across the two series tournaments will win the World Tens League Title 2020 and be seeded number one for the WTS Cup.
The WTS Cup will be a knock-out play-off taking place on 7 November. The League Title winner and, number one seed, will receive a bye straight through to the semi-finals with the remaining six teams competing in a quarter-final match. Two Semi-finals and a Final will follow where the WTS Cup 2020 will be awarded to the winning team.
SX10 FORWARDS: Frikkie De Beer, Marzuq Maaman, Thinus Van Zyl, Cory Daniel, Andrew Amonde, Tienie Burger, Gary Porter, Harry McNulty
BACKS: Luke Treharne, Craig Hunt, Cecil Afrika, Connor Wallace Sims, Oscar Dennis, JT Jackson, JP Du Plessis, Willy Ambaka, Collins Injera, Christian Ambadiang, Dewald Naude
Miami Sun squad: Will Vakalahi (Old Glory DC), Anthony Parry (Rugby United New York), Michael Brown (Rugby United ew York), Josh Larsen (New England Free Jacks), Matthew, Hughson, Luca Tani (LA Giltinis), Wesley Teo (Blemont Shore), Moses Lalasava (Seattle Saracens), Connor Buck (WTS Combines), Nick Bowyer (San Diego Legion), Joey Sok (WTS Combines), Nolan Tuamoheloa (Utah Warriors)
James Stokes, Mark O’Keefe (Landsdowne), Tyrie Allen (WTS Combines), Matthew Coore (WTS Combines), Troy Lockyear (Rugy United New York), Janry Du Toit, Marcus Satuva, DTH Van der Merwe
London Royals: Stephen Coetzee (Seattle), Devanate Onojaife, Andrew Durutalo (Seattle Seawolves), Sean McNulty (LA Giltinis), Collin Hughes (WTS Combines Athlete), Ross Neal (Seattle Seawolves), Max Northcote-Green, Alex Gray, Aldo Campbell, Richard de Carpentier, Robert Elan-Puttick (Austin Gilgronis), James Haley (WTS Combine Athlete), Tom Mitchell, David Busby (Seattle Seawolves), Alex Davis, JP Aguirre (Seattle Seawolves), Tom Bowen, Tom Emery, Dan Norton, Giovani Douyyon (WTS Combine Athlete), Ben Foden (Rugby United New York)
Ohio Aviators FORWARDS :Kyle Baillie (NOLA Gold), Chris Baumann (Austin Blacks), Dylan Fawsitt (Rugby United New York), Riekert Hattingh (Seattle Seawolves), Eric Howard (NOLA Gold), Spencer Krueger (New England Free Jacks), John Sullivan (NOLA Gold), Brad Tucker (Seattle Seawolves), Paddy Ryan (Unattached), Moni Tongauiha (NOLA Gold)
BACKS Bryce Campbell (Unattached), Ben Cima (Seattle Seawolves), JP Eloff (NOLA Gold), Tiaan Loots (Unattached), Will Magie (Austin Gilgronis), Shawn Riley (NOLA Gold), Cristian Rodriguez (Belmont Shore), JP Smith (Seattle Seawolves), Shalom Suniula (Seattle Seawolves), Nick Feakes (NOLA Gold)
Coaching Staff Taylor Howden – Head Coach, Tom Rooney – Program Director, Richard Quincy – Medical Director, Zack Stryffeler – Manager, Kane Thompson – Assistant Coach
Asia Pacific Dragons squad: Vili Tolutau – (Seattle Seawolves). Jamason Fa’anana-Schultz (Old Glory DC), Faafetai William Teo (Old Mission Beach Athletic Club RFC), Chris Eves (Manawatu), Lino Saunitoga (Kalihi Raiders), Apisai Naikatini (Old Glory DC), Maikeli Naromaitoga, Miles Wakelin, Rowan Gouws, Kurt Morath (Austin Gilgronis), Nafi Tuitavake, Tomasi Alosio (Samoa 7s), Thretton Palamo (Houston Sabrecats), Tommy Bell, Hemaua Samisoni, Elden Schoeman (Turks), Alex Khutsishvili (WTS Combine Athlete),Jamil Robinson (WTS Combine Athlete)