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Packman into England Sevens squad for Glasgow

29 April 2014

  • England U20 flyer Howard Packman called up for Glasgow
  • Hong Kong runners-up England face Canada, France and Japan on day one
Packman in action for the U20s

Photo: Getty Images

England Under 20 flyer Howard Packman will join the England Sevens squad for the first time as they compete at the Emirates Airline Glasgow Sevens this weekend.

The Northampton Saints Academy full back/wing only change to the side that at finished third and second in Tokyo and Hong Kong respectively.

The 18-year-old replaces former England Under 20 skipper and Harlequins No.8 Jack Clifford who had an impact and benefited from the experience of the previous two tournaments.

Packman has represented England at each age group since Under 16 and will hope to follow in Clifford’s footsteps in June when he heads to New Zealand as part of the Under 20 squad to defend the IRB Junior World Championship trophy.

Ahead of the eighth leg of the HSBC Sevens World Series, England Sevens Head Coach Simon Amor outlined Packman's potential after watching him in training.

 “Howard has played for a number of England teams and has been a super talent from a very young age.," he said. "This is a great opportunity to get him involved in the Glasgow tournament. With the Junior World Championship very much in mind, this will help with his preparation and development. 

"In training with the squad, he has proved that he is a devastating runner and we are hoping that he will not only add something to the England Sevens team but also gain a lot from the experience.

“It’s a challenge for any team when new players come in at different stages but the squad understands how sevens fits into the England development pathway. Our ability to do this reflects the strength and unity of the core group and credit must go particularly to the senior players for integrating the young guys and bringing them up to speed.”

England are currently fourth in the world series standings, eight points behind Fiji who trail South Africa and New Zealand, with just Glasgow and the Marriott London Sevens (May 10 and 11) left to play.  They face Canada, France and Japan on day one of competition in Glasgow.

“France and Canada are particularly physical teams,” Amor added. “We have beaten Canada by a single score in the past two tournaments and the last time we played France it was very close. It will be a good test for our young team. Japan were outstanding in Hong Kong and justifiably won the qualification tournament.  Their strength is their speed and dynamism so they provide a different threat and are certainly not to be underestimated.”

Coverage of the Glasgow Sevens is live on Sky Sports 3 from 10.30am on Saturday and 10am on Sunday.

England Sevens squad for Glasgow Sevens (12)

Dan Bibby
Phil Burgess
Sam Blanchet
Alex Gray
Tom Mitchell (Captain)
Dan Norton
Howard Packman
Tom Powell
James Rodwell
Sam Stanley
Marcus Watson
Jack Walsh