Flyer Norton commits to England Sevens
Leading try scorer Dan Norton has committed himself to England Sevens after signing a new deal with the national side.
The former Gloucester and Bristol wing has scored 33 tries so far in this season’s HSBC Sevens World Series with two events still to come in Glasgow on 5-6 May and at the Marriott London Sevens on 12-13 May.
His personal tally is six more than his nearest global rivals, New Zealand’s Frank Halai and Samoa’s Paul Perez.
“I know there are several clubs who wanted to have him on board, so we’re delighted to have secured his services,” said England Sevens head coach, Ben Ryan. “Dan’s made excellent progress this season, worked hard all over the pitch and deserves the praise that’s come his way for the tries he’s scored. Every coach in the series would love to have him on their side.
“We’re in the second year of our full-time Sevens programme now and the benefits are showing throughout the squad in terms of the individual development of each player and the collective understanding of how we want to play.”
The 24 year-old from Bristol, arguably the fastest man on the world sevens circuit, has scored 81 tries in his international career to date with only Ben Gollings (220), Richard Haughton (106) and Rob Thirlby (101) ahead of him on England’s all-time list.
“I’m really happy to be able to continue what I’m doing," Norton said. "I enjoy the set-up, working with all the players and coaches and the team spirit is great.
“Finishing this season on a high at Glasgow and Twickenham is the immediate goal. Beyond that the next ambitions are to win the HSBC Sevens World Series with England and the Sevens World Cup next summer.
“Going full-time with sevens this season has meant it’s been easy to concentrate on specific parts of my game, and the extra contact time we have has helped our understanding of the game and built a really strong team culture.”
England currently lie fourth in the HSBC Sevens World Series going into the final two rounds in Europe.
They face Kenya, the USA and Australia in the pool stages of the Glasgow Sevens stages on May 5-6 with Ryan due to name his squad at the start of next week.
Video: Three Norton tries action in Dubai
11-12 May 2013