There will be no easy pathways to the Cup Finals for the Americas teams at the upcoming Cape Town Sevens. All three have drawn high caliber opposition in their pools for the second stage of the HSBC Sevens Series, a crucial event given the poor results in Dubai this past weekend.
Mike Friday’s USA team will be desperate to restore some pride after an awful showing in Dubai that saw them drop all five matches and lose star player Perry Baker to concussion in the first game. They will play in Pool B in Cape Town and will have to defeat, or at least draw, one of New Zealand or Australia to make the Cup Quarter Finals. Spain round out the pool. All four were part of the 2016 Olympic Games.
Canada were similarly disappointing though they did manage two wins from five. They have been drawn in Pool D along with Pacific Island headliners Fiji and Samoa, the latter looking greatly improved after signing 22 players on domestic contracts. Wales complete the pool, a team that has frustrated Canada consistently over the past couple seasons.
The best of the Americas teams in Dubai was Argentina, but even they did not reach the Cup Quarter Finals. They will have UK duo England and Scotland to contend with in Pool C, along with invitational upstarts Uganda. The African nation impressed in Dubai and are not far off achieving an historic upset.
Hosts and defending champions South Africa are the top seeds in Pool A. They will face Kenya, France, and Russia on Day One. All matches will be streamed live by World Rugby.