Australian Rugby Sevens coach Michael O'Connor is confident that his youthful squad is capable of competing on the world stage when the IRB Sevens World Series kicks off in Dubai on Friday.

O'Connor's 12-man team has an average age of just 20 and only four players - captain Patrick McCutcheon, utility back Brian Sefanaia, Shaun Foley and Clinton Sills - have previous experience on the eight-leg Sevens circuit.

"It's a good opportunity for them to step out onto the world stage and show what they've got," O'Connor said.


"We're one of the youngest squads in the IRB Sevens and that's not a bad thing.

"They're young, they're keen, they're very enthusiastic and they've come well together in a short period of time, they're very eager to learn and to do well.

"We're not in an easy pool by any stretch of the imagination, but we're looking forward to the challenge."

Australia have been drawn alongside defending World Series champions South Africa, current Sevens World Cup-holders Wales and the Arabian Gulf in the 16-team tournament.

The Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens doubles as a celebration, the first major international Sevens tournament since the sport's acceptance into the Olympic Games from 2016.

Wallabies coach Robbie Deans fully supports O'Connor's side and has signalled that he will again attend the Australian leg of the Series in Adelaide on 19-21 March.

Last year, Deans was impressed by what he saw and added youngsters Luke Morahan and Richard Kingi to the Wallabies' recent tour squad, to join other Sevens stars such as James O'Connor and Adam Ashley-Cooper.

Australia: Robbie Coleman, Bernard Foley, Shaun Foley, Talalelei Gray, Zack Holmes, Brackin Karauria-Henry, Patrick McCutcheon (captain), Nicholas Phipps, Edward Quirk, Brian Sefanaia, Clinton Sills, Jacob Taylor.