BOULDER, Colo. – Eagles Head Coach, Eddie O’Sullivan, has released his preliminary 50-man squad ahead of the Rugby World Cup (RWC) in September. The list includes some players not seen recently (or ever) in a USA jersey, notably former USA U19 captain and Otago Highlanders wing James Paterson, University of Utah football running back and rugby star Thretton Palamo, and Utah Warriors No. 8 Ryan Chapman.
“With the World Cup less than three months away we have put together an extended pool of players from which the final Eagles Squad of 30 players will emerge,” said O’Sullivan.
The names were submitted to the International Rugby Board as part of a requirement of Rugby World Cup planning. Each rugby union will then select their final squad of 30 players by the August 22 deadline.
O’Sullivan has had an opportunity to watch half of this squad in the recent Churchill Cup competition. Several players certainly impressed in the 32-25 victory over Russia, putting up their hands for RWC inclusion.
“The players who made the Churchill Cup Squad have the advantage of having been in camp together for the past three weeks,” said O’Sullivan, “But there are players who missed the Churchill Cup for various reasons.
With a busy July of fitness training ahead and three warm-up games in August, there will be plenty of opportunities for players to impress before we select the final RWC Squad near the end of August.”
The preliminary squad consists of 26 forwards and 24 backline players.
The Eagles will next assemble at the end of July, before taking on Canada on August 6 (BMO Field, Toronto, Canada) and August 13 (Infinity Park, Glendale, Colo.). The USA will then travel to Tokyo to play against Japan on August 21.
USA EAGLES RWC PRELIMINARY SQUAD
Inaki Basauri (L' Aquila), Chris Biller (San Francisco Golden Gate), Mark Bokhoven (Denver Barbarians), Ryan Chapman (Utah Warriors), Todd Clever (Suntory Sungoliath, Japan), Pat Danahy (Life University), Cameron Dolan (Life University), Eric Fry (Las Vegas Blackjacks), JJ Gagiano (Univ. of Cape Town), Matt Hawkins (Belmont Shore), Nic Johnson (Unattached), Will Johnson (London Irish), Tom Katzfey (New York Athletic Club), Danny LaPrevotte (San Francisco Golden Gate), Scott LaValla (Stade Francais), Mike MacDonald (Leeds Carnegie), Samu Manoa (San Francisco Golden Gate), Brian McClenahan (Olympic Club), Mate Moeakiola (Bobigny 93), Alec Parker (Glendale), Shawn Pittman (London Welsh), Anthony Purpura (Boston Rugby), Hayden Smith (Saracens), Louis Stanfill (Mogliano), Phil Thiel (Life University), John van der Giessen (Utah Warriors)
Paul Emerick (Life University), Tai Enosa (Belmont Shore), Troy Hall (New York Athletic Club), Colin Hawley (Olympic Club), Nese Malifa (Glendale), Taku Ngwenya (Biarritz), Folau Niua (San Francisco Golden Gate), Thretton Palamo (University of Utah), Mike Palefau (Utah Warriors), James Paterson (Otago Highlanders, New Zealand), Mike Petri (New York Athletic Club), Volney Rouse (San Francisco Golden Gate), Blaine Scully (University of California - Berkeley), Robbie Shaw (Bristol Rugby), Junior Sifa (Nottingham RFC), Andrew Suniula (Chicago Griffins), Roland Suniula (Boston Rugby), Shalom Suniula (Unattached), Kevin Swiryn (Agen), Zack Test (Unattached), Pate Tuilevuka (Old Puget Sound Beach), Seta Tuilevuka (Montpellier), Tim Usasz (Nottingham RFC), Chris Wyles (Saracens)
RWC BUILD-UP SCHEDULE
August 6, 2011: USA v. Canada (BMO Field, Toronto, Canada)
August 13, 2011: USA v. Canada (Infinity Park, Glendale, CO)
August 21, 2011: USA v. Japan (Tokyo, Japan)
RWC 2011 SCHEDULE | NEW ZEALAND
September 11, 2011: USA vs. Ireland (New Plymouth)
September 15, 2011: USA vs. Russia (New Plymouth)
September 23, 2011: USA vs. Australia (Wellington)
September 27, 2011: USA vs. Italy (Nelson)