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Preview: 2014 #Glasgow7s

Scottish Rugby

James Mortimer     01 May 2014     Scottish Rugby

The All Blacks Sevens, with two rounds and a maximum of 44 points on offer, lead the Series with 136.

South Africa (129), Fiji (112) and England (104) round out the other teams to have cracked a century of competition points.

New Zealand’s success in Hong Kong added to their victories in the Gold Coast and Wellington.

However while Sir Gordon Tietjens team has seen his squad operate with it’s almost legendary consistency, and some fine tactical acumen throughout, any of the four above mentioned nations could still take the 2013/2014 crown.

All Blacks Sevens captain DJ Forbes will become the most capped New Zealand player when he takes the field in Scotstoun Stadium, earning his 68th cap.

With the team featuring a debutant in the form of Crusaders wing Adam Whitelock, the growing pool of talent available to the coaching team is obvious.

Two players from the Hong Kong Sevens team, Marty McKenzie and George Tilsley, did not board the plane.

Tomasi Cama and Lote Raikabula also missed the cut, which the coach admitted was a tough decision.

It is in dramatic contrast to other nations, some with heavy injury tolls, and Tietjens marked this fact as the reason for another new face despite the availability of capped players.

Often the country with the greatest depth triumphs.

Pooled in Glasgow with South Africa, Samoa and Portugal - a tough physical group will ensure the All Blacks Sevens are given a stern examination early.

With six straight wins, and 25 from their last 30, the defending champions are in form.

Their opening match against Samoa will see the Pacific Islanders strive for their first win over New Zealand since December 2012, while Portugal will chase their maiden triumph in 21 clashes against the competition leaders.

It is South Africa in the All Blacks Sevens final match of the day that will present the biggest threat.

Twice the ‘Blitzbokke’ have lifted the Cup this year, in South Africa and United States, at New Zealand’s expense in the final.

Expect fireworks, as the Sevens Series lights up the Glasgow sky.

This will be the third year the leg has been in the largest city in Scotland, and seventh overall.

New Zealand are chasing their fourth Cup victory in the country that gave birth to Rugby Sevens.

The team is:

Scott Curry (Manawatu)
Ambrose Curtis (Wellington)
Sam Dickson (Canterbury)
DJ Forbes (capt) (Counties)
Bryce Heem (Tasman)
Akira Ioane (Auckland)
Gillies Kaka (Hawke's Bay)
Ben Lam (Auckland)
Tim Mikkelson (Waikato)
Sherwin Stowers (Counties)
Joe Webber (Waikato)
Adam Whitelock* (Canterbury)

DAY ONE MATCHES

NZ matches

5. 03 May 2014 - 11:58 (10:58pm NZT) NZ  0 - 0 Samoa 
13. 03 May 2014 - 15:04 (02:04 NZT 4 May) NZ  0 - 0 Portugal 
22. 03 May 2014 - 18:37 (17:37 NZT 4 May) NZ  0 - 0 South Africa 

Remainder of fixtures

1. 03 May 2014 - 10:30 Fiji 0 - 0 Argentina Pool C
2. 03 May 2014 - 10:52 Wales 0 - 0 Kenya Pool C
3. 03 May 2014 - 11:14 England 0 - 0 France Pool B
4. 03 May 2014 - 11:36 Canada 0 - 0 Japan Pool B
6. 03 May 2014 - 12:20 South Africa 0 - 0 Portugal Pool A
7. 03 May 2014 - 12:42 Australia 0 - 0 Scotland Pool D
8. 03 May 2014 - 13:04 United States 0 - 0 Spain Pool D
9. 03 May 2014 - 13:36 Fiji 0 - 0 Kenya Pool C
10. 03 May 2014 - 13:58 Wales 0 - 0 Argentina Pool C
11. 03 May 2014 - 14:20 England 0 - 0 Japan Pool B
12. 03 May 2014 - 14:42 Canada 0 - 0 France Pool B
14. 03 May 2014 - 15:26 South Africa 0 - 0 Samoa Pool A
15. 03 May 2014 - 15:48 Australia 0 - 0 Spain Pool D
16. 03 May 2014 - 16:10 United States 0 - 0 Scotland Pool D
17. 03 May 2014 - 16:47 Fiji 0 - 0 Wales Pool C
18. 03 May 2014 - 17:09 Argentina 0 - 0 Kenya Pool C
19. 03 May 2014 - 17:31 England 0 - 0 Canada Pool B
20. 03 May 2014 - 17:53 France 0 - 0 Japan Pool B
21. 03 May 2014 - 18:15 Samoa 0 - 0 Portugal Pool A
23. 03 May 2014 - 18:59 Australia 0 - 0 United States Pool D
24. 03 May 2014 - 19:21 Scotland 0 - 0 Spain Pool D