- USA’s Perry Baker and Carlin Isles set to reach 200 tries at newest HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series event
- All teams have confirmed their squads for the HSBC LA Sevens - view squads
- LA marks the half-way point in the men’s 2020 series
Two of the fastest athletes on the planet will look to create history at the newest event on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series which takes place in Los Angeles this weekend.
USA Sevens stars Perry Baker and Carlin Isles are both set to reach 200 tries on home soil at the HSBC LA Sevens which will be hosted at Dignity Health Sports Park from 29 February to 1 March, making them the USA Eagles Sevens’ leading try scorers.
“They’re two of a kind, they’re really special guys and they’re both very different in their own way,” said USA captain Madison Hughes.
“There’s nothing like getting the ball to either of them in the slightest bit of space and they’re just gone. We’ve got not only one speedster, but two who can do that, and few teams can boast that so we’re very, very lucky to have them.”
After lifting the cup at both the 2018 and 2019 USA events, which were previously held in Las Vegas, the USA will be looking to secure their third successive title on home soil this weekend.
The hosts are drawn in Pool C and will face Australia, Scotland and Samoa in the pool phase of the competition on Saturday.
Series leaders New Zealand will also be celebrating a major milestone this weekend as their co-captain Tim Mikkelson is poised to become the most capped All Blacks Sevens player of all time and the joint second most capped player of all time, sharing this accolade with England’s Dan Norton. Mikkelson will contest his 90th tournament in Los Angeles, surpassing New Zealand legend DJ Forbes and trailing James Rodwell’s record of 93.
Mikkelson commented: “Passing DJ – a guy that I’ve played a lot of football with and a guy that I respect is awesome. I played my first sevens tournament with Dan Norton which was an invitational tournament, so it’s great to see us still going and our last pool game against each other on Saturday will be an awesome game.”
New Zealand will face Wales, Spain and England in Pool D.
South Africa, who are currently ranked second in this year’s competition, will applaud Werner Kok as he clocks up his 50th tournament in California this weekend. Kok joins an illustrious group of Springbok Sevens players for this milestone, and should he face Kenya in their Pool B clash on Saturday, Kok will also reach his 250th world series match.
Completing the Pool B line-up is Ireland – who, as the new core team for 2020, will play their first tournament in the United States this weekend, and Canada.
Elsewhere, invitational side Korea will take on Fiji, France and Argentina in Pool A. Korea won their regional qualification tournament for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics with their exposure on the world series acting as crucial preparation for the Games later this year.
The action gets underway at 09:45 local time (GMT-8) on Saturday 29 February when Pool D’s New Zealand take on Wales.
Single-day tickets, weekend passes and VIP packages still available from https://lasevensrugby.com/tickets. A family package is also available with single-day and weekend options.