New Zealand-born London Scottish skipper Mark Bright has been called up the England sevens squad preparing for this summer’s Commonwealth Games, writes Andy Weston.
The 35-year-old forward will be loaned to the RFU for a two-month period as England target gold at the Glasgow Games.
Bright, scorer of 21 tries in 28 games at number eight this season, will look to impress England sevens head coach Simon Amor, his former director of rugby at London Scottish, during the summer FIRA-AER European GP Sevens series which begins tomorrow in Lyon.
Bright moved to England ten years ago from New Zealand and is thrilled about the prospect of pulling on the red rose for his adopted country.
“I will be really proud and honoured to wear the England jersey,” he said.
“It will be a career highlight and a massive thing for me at the tail end of my career.
“I was a bit shocked when I first heard about this opportunity and at my age it will be the last chance to do something like this.
“I know I have got a lot of hard work to do to force my way into the Commonwealth Games squad but I look forward to that challenge.”
And it a challenge to which Amor believes Bright is well suited.
“I am delighted London Scottish have agreed to release Mark to train with us and compete for a place in the squad for the Commonwealth Games.
“The Championship is consistently producing talented players and Mark has, for a number of seasons, been a standout performer.
“He has regularly captained the Samurai International Sevens team to success and his ball carrying ability and physicality in the breakdown is well known.”
London Scottish coach Mike Friday, who has coached both England and Kenya on the IRB World Sevens circuit added: “I have worked with him on the invitational Sevens circuit for a good five years now and he has had great success.
“He is a real physical presence in the contact area and his fantastic aerial, offloading and decision making skills can cause problems.”