Lovell Rugby Interview England Sevens Hooker/Centre Jeff Williams
With only two rounds of the HSBC Sevens World Series to play, England will be looking to put in some strong performances in order to get themselves up the final standings by the time the series come to a close at Twickenham on the 12th of May.
It has been a season of mixed results for the English with the highlight being a 24-19 win over Kenya in the Cup Final in New Zealand. All red rose fans would love to see a repeat of this in London in the final leg of the series.
A dynamic and powerful hooker and centre, Jeff Williams gave a hint of what was to come with an impressive solo score against Australia in the closing stages of the 2012 London Sevens on his England debut. Williams trying scoring continued as he ran in eight tries in his next seven tournaments.
We were lucky enough to get the opportunity to ask him a few questions about his time with the England Sevens squad, his opinion on the new kit and what he expects in the future for the team. Here is what he had to say:
How long have you been playing for England 7s?
I made my debut for England in the Twickenham Sevens last season and have been lucky enough to play in every tournament since.
What is your favourite tournament in the 7s series?
My favourite tournament is a toss-up between Twickenham and Wellington. Wellington is an amazing place to play, particularly in front of such a passionate crowd. Twickenham probably just edges it as there is nothing better than playing for your country in front of a packed stadium.
What do you think of the new CCC England 7s shirts?
I am a big fan of the new home shirt and like that fact that it is a bit different and allows us to stand out from the crowd. It is an honour pulling on the English jersey and I will always give my all regardless of the colour of the shirt.
Do you still play 15s, or exclusively 7s now?
Exclusively Sevens for the next 3 years at least, but who know where the future may take me.
What boots do you wear?
I wear the Mizuno Neo’s and love the fact that they are really light but very durable at the same time, making them a great match for 7s.
Do you prefer coloured boots?
I am currently wearing yellow but I can be a little bit old school when it comes to boots so I do prefer black boots.
What is the main difference between 7 and 15 aside?
The main difference between 7s and 15s is the space that is available to you. The athletes that you play against are also very different with more of an emphasis on speed and stamina in 7s. The ability to play three high intensity games of 7s each day is incredibly draining on the body.
What are your chances with the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Russia looming?
We are just concentrating on Glasgow and Twickenham and then we will go into a mini-camp with a view to competing at the World Cup. It is sure to be a great event but we must finish the IRB Sevens Series well before we can turn our attention to the World Cup.
Do you expect many international 15s players to convert to 7s with rugby being included in the Rio Olympics?
Yes I do. The Olympics is the pinnacle of sport and I can imagine that there will be a number of top players out there who are dreaming of winning an Olympic medal. There is obviously the 15 a-side World Cup in London before the Olympics so 15s players are probably focusing on that for the time being, but I am sure once that is over they will turn their attention to their opportunity to represent Great Britain at 7s.
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