USA Sevens get their man Friday

(IRB.COM) Saturday 19 July 2014
 USA Sevens get their man Friday
Friday was the man behind Kenya's success in 2012/13. Can he do the same for the Eagles?

USA Rugby has announced former England and Kenya coach Mike Friday as their new men's Eagles Sevens head coach.

Friday will work alongside National Development Director Alex Magleby and assistant coach Chris Brown while continuing his duties at London Scottish for the 2014/15 English Championship season.

Friday and Brown will implement a new training regime for the Eagles Sevens at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, California, replicating the programme they put in place to take Kenya to fifth on the HSBC Sevens World Series 2012/13. 

As head coach of the England Sevens Friday won four Hong Kong titles between 2002 and 2006, and back-to-back Dubai and London titles. In all, Friday won 11 Cups during his time with England and led the team to its only medal at a Commonwealth Games in 2006. He also represented and captained his country on the circuit as a player.

“I am naturally delighted and excited about the challenge of returning to the World Sevens circuit and starting a new Sevens journey with the USA Eagles,” Friday said.

“The programme will be run much how I implemented the successful performance cycle programme in the past, which will allow me the ability to continue in my role as director of rugby at London Scottish.

“I am fortunate to have both the full support of London Scottish and the USA Eagles and look forward to an exciting season ahead for both club and country.”

The Eagles will get their first opportunity to qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games – the first Olympics to include Rugby Sevens – during the upcoming 2014/15 HSBC Sevens World Series, from which the top four-ranked teams will qualify automatically for Rio.

The season will begin in October at Australia's Gold Coast Sevens with London the final round in May 2015. The Eagles’ home leg of the circuit, the USA Sevens, is scheduled for 13-15 February in Las Vegas.

“Mike has had enormous success on the Sevens circuit and we are delighted he has accepted this new challenge,” said USA Rugby Chief Executive Officer, Nigel Melville, who was Friday’s coach at London Wasps.

“The players at the OTC have already begun working with Chris and the first Men's Eagles High Performance Sevens camp next weekend will help kick off the season.”