For Immediate Release
Submitted by USA Rugby
April 7, 2016
HONG KONG – Nate Ebner will make his HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series debut for the Men’s Eagles Sevens this weekend at Cathay Pacific/HBSC Hong Kong Sevens, the seventh leg of the 2015-16 season.
The former AIG Men’s Junior All-American last month announced his intention to train with the residents at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., for a chance to compete with the U.S. team at the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games. Though he was not originally selected to the 12-man national team, the New England Patriot of the National Football League traveled to Asia with the Samurai International Rugby Football Club to compete in the GFI Hong Kong Football Club 10s tournament.
Samurai was defeated in the Cup Final Thursday night, hours before it was decided Carlin Isles, who recently attempted to qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games as a sprinter, was not 100 percent fit to compete this weekend. Ebner was called up to the Eagles, and will wear the No. 1 jersey at Hong Kong Stadium.
The three-day tournament kicks off Friday, April 8, with one match of pool play for each competing team. The Eagles begin with Portugal, which has fallen to Mike Friday’s side twice in pool play this season. Play continues Saturday, April 9, as the U.S. faces Argentina – ranked one spot below the fifth-place Eagles – and Australia. The Aussies have been boosted by “The Honey Badger,” Nick Cummins, and come into the tournament with a fourth-place standing and 2-0 record against the U.S. this season.
The knockout rounds will be contested Sunday, April 10, with the entire tournament broadcast live on World Rugby’s website. Live match updates will also be provided by USA Rugby’s Twitter account (@USARugby).
About USA Rugby
Established in 1975, USA Rugby is the governing body for the sport of rugby in America and a Full Sport Member of the United States Olympic Committee. Currently headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, USA Rugby is charged with developing the game on all levels and has more than 100,000 active members, with more than 35,000 playing collegiate rugby and 35,000 playing senior club rugby. USA Rugby oversees four national teams, multiple collegiate and high school All-American sides, and an emerging Olympic development pathway for elite athletes. It also hosts more than 30 national playoff and championship events each year as a service to its members. In October 2009, the International Olympic Committee announced Rugby Sevens (the seven-a-side version of the game) will appear in the 2016 Olympic Games to be held in Rio de Janeiro. Visit www.usarugby.org for more information.
Nick Sero | Manager, Digital Media and Communications | USA Rugby | firstname.lastname@example.org