by Nigel Melville
Nigel Melville Direct
Today the teams on the HSBC World Sevens Series arrive in Las Vegas after competing in the Wellington Sevens this weekend, its a long flight north, crossing the international dateline on the way, and understandably the teams arrive tired and hungry. The games for this years Las Vegas sevens start on Friday night, making recovery from jet lag a priority for the teams as they prepare for next weekend's event.
Off the field, my week starts with International Rugby Board meetings, the Tier 2 Unions are holding a meeting on Wednesday to discuss, and hopefully agree an international playing schedule for the Tier 2's that helps us to plan our programs for multiple years rather than finding out 6 months ahead of time that we have to play Japan in Tokyo or Russia in Moscow! The Tier 2 meeting is followed by the arrival of delegates for the Sevens Advisory Group Meeting on Thursday. This includes representatives from all 9 HSBC Sevens Series venues plus HSBC, IRB and others involved in delivering the Series.
Teams start arriving for the Las Vegas Invitational Tournament on Wednesday, the Women's International teams are also arriving and play starts towards the end of the week on the fields surrounding the Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas.
On Friday, just about everyone else arrives, we are running one of the World's largest Rugby Medical Symposiums, a Sevens Coaching Course run by the Sevens Rugby icon Serevi, and plenty of Territorial, Board and Foundation meetings will also be taking place. I also have special guests flying in to spend the weekend with us including our sponsors, IRB and USOC representatives.
The main event kicks off on Friday night, I will spend sometime with both the men's and women's Eagles teams this week and discuss with them their plans for the tournament. I know the men were disappointed with their performance in Wellington, I will certainly be getting feedback on what happened and what's been done to make sure we step up next weekend in front of our own fans.
The Eagles Women were in camp in Tampa during the new year and for the last two weeks in San Diego, I am looking forward to seeing them in action, Ric Suggitt has certainly been working them hard, they also spent time with Dave Ellis (french defense coach) at their extended camp program at the Olympic Training Centre in San Diego - a real step up in intensity for the program, I hope you get chance to get behind them on Friday.
An exciting week ahead for Rugby in North America, the event will once again be broadcast on NBC, a huge thanks to John Miller and his team who are supporting the growth of rugby in the USA, lets make sure everyone gets behind this years event either live in Vegas or on their TV sets across America.
If you want to buy tickets click HERE for the best deals, I am looking forward to seeing you all...
Follow the Eagles with week on the USA Rugby website and you can also follow me live at the event on Twitter @NigelMelville
With an impressive resume as player, coach and administrator, Nigel David Melville took over as CEO and President of Rugby Operations of USA Rugby, the National Governing Body of the sport in America, in 2006. In addition to his full time job promoting the sport in the U.S., Melville has launched his own blog, Nigel Melville Direct, to further the discussion and his passion for what it will take to make the U.S. a great rugby playing nation.
CLICK HERE to read more on Nigel Melville
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