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Newcastle Falcons name strong squad for Singha 7s


Newcastle Falcons have named a strong squad for the Singha Premiership 7s at Kingston Park Stadium on Saturday July 30, relying almost exclusively on their full-time contracted players.

The Singha 7s sees Newcastle Falcons hosting Leicester Tigers, Sale Sharks and Worcester Warriors in round-robin action from 3pm, with the top two teams on the day earning a place in the finals at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena on Sunday August 7.
Tom Catterick and Joel Hodgson, both of whom won the 2011 Premiership 7s title with the Falcons in 2011, are included in a squad captained by Dan Temm, the back-row forward who made his Aviva Premiership debut at Saracens in the penultimate week of last season.
Dan Marshall and Ruaridh Dawson play for the second season running after helping the Falcons win their home qualifier last year, while Scotland Under-20s lock Andrew Davidson makes his Falcons debut in the competition after joining from Glasgow Warriors.
Glen Young returns to Newcastle colours having played in last season’s Championship final for Doncaster Knights on dual registration, while Tom Penny brings Premiership and European experience to the squad. The only ‘guest’ player is England 7s prospect Tom Ffitch, who will be spending time with the Falcons in tandem with his England sevens academy commitments after being recommended to the club by his school coach, Andy Goode.
Newcastle Falcons academy manager and first-team skills coach Mark Laycock said: “We have picked a squad with plenty of play-makers, and we hope to continue our proud record of having won all of our home qualifying tournaments.
“That record brings with it an added pressure and expectation, but I am confident this group has the quality and attitude to shine on what is always a really enjoyable day. With it being held at Kingston Park Stadium there will be no shortage of local support, and with rugby sevens about to make its debut in the Olympic Games there is no better time for people to come down in person and see what all the fuss is about.”
Adult and concession tickets for the Singha 7s on Saturday July 30 are available priced £20 for premium seating, £10 for standard seating and £5 for under-16s, with a special ‘sevens heaven’ deal on offer for groups of seven or more. To book call 0871 226 6060.
Newcastle Falcons squad:
1 Dan Temm (captain)
2 Santiago Socino
3 Glen Young
4 Andrew Davidson
5 Max Davies
6 Tom Penny
7 Dan Marshall
8 Tom Catterick
9 Ruaridh Dawson
10 Joel Hodgson
11 Ben Stevenson
12 Tom Ffitch
Dan Temm
Position in 15s: Flanker
Date of birth: 20/5/91
Dan Temm was born and raised in New Zealand, the English-qualified forward coming over to the UK initially as a cricketer in the Yorkshire leagues. Arriving at Newcastle Falcons via Old Crossleyans, Otley and Tynedale, Dan helped the Falcons win their Premiership 7s group in 2014 and made his Aviva Premiership debut at Saracens in April of this year.
Santiago Socino
Position in 15s: Hooker
Date of birth: 7/5/92
Santiago Socino is an Argentinean forward who arrived at the Falcons from Hull Ionians last year. Spending last season on dual registration with National One club Darlington Mowden Park as part of his conversion from back-row to hooker, Santiago was named coaches’ player of the season at Mowden. He is also the younger brother of Falcons’ Argentina centre Juan Pablo Socino.
Glen Young
Position in 15s: Lock/flanker
Date of birth: 4/11/94
Glen Young is a former Scotland Under-20s cap who joined the Falcons from the Jedforest club, home of ex-Newcastle great Gary Armstrong. Spending last season on dual registration with Doncaster Knights, Glen played for the Yorkshire club in last season’s Championship final against Bristol, helping them to victory in the second leg at Ashton Gate.
Andrew Davidson
Position in 15s: Lock
Date of birth: 7/11/96
Andrew Davidson played for Scotland Under-20s in June’s Junior World Championship, starting in their historic first ever victory over Australia before suffering a concussion in their second outing. Making his Newcastle debut in the Singha 7s after joining from Glasgow Warriors in the summer, the 6 foot 7 forward is a relative novice to the abbreviated code but brings a major physical presence.
Max Davies
Position in 15s: Lock
Date of birth: 4/10/97
Max Davies is an England Under-19s lock-forward who stepped up to the Falcons’ full-time senior academy squad this summer after completing his studies at Sedbergh School. Born in St Helens, his previous clubs include Waterloo and Sale Sharks academy.
Tom Penny
Position in 15s: Centre
Date of birth: 13/10/94
Tom Penny is a Northumbrian back who has been with the Falcons since the age of 11. Born in Alnwick, for whom he played his junior rugby, Tom attended RGS Newcastle and has already represented the first team in the Aviva Premiership, scoring away to Northampton Saints last season.
Dan Marshall

Position in 15s: Wing
Date of birth: 11/8/97
Dan Marshall is a Newcastle native who shone in last season’s Singha 7s group victory at Kingston Park, a performance which earned him a place in the England squad for the Commonwealth Youth Games 7s in Samoa. The AASE graduate has already represented the Falcons’ first team in the European Challenge Cup and is renowned for his pace and quick footwork.
Tom Catterick
Position in 15s: Fly-half
Date of birth: 18/10/90
County Durham’s Tom Catterick is a former England 7s international who already has 50 Aviva Premiership appearances to his name, having come through the famed Barnard Castle School. Part of the Falcons side which won the Premiership 7s in 2011, his play-making and finishing make him a focal point of the Newcastle attack.
Ruaridh Dawson
Position in 15s: Scrum-half
Date of birth: 16/7/97
Consett’s Ruaridh Dawson was part of the Falcons squad which won last year’s Singha 7s qualifier at Kingston Park Stadium, representing England at the Commonwealth Youth Games 7s in Samoa before switching allegiance to Scotland Under-20s, for whom he qualifies via his father. Dawson made his Falcons first team debut in the home victory over the Georgian national team a year ago, and has featured for the club in the European Challenge Cup.
Joel Hodgson
Position in 15s: Fly-half
Date of birth: 1/8/92
Joel Hodgson is beginning his second spell with the Falcons after two years away from Kingston Park, which he spent at Northampton Saints And Yorkshire Carnegie. Part of the Falcons side which won the Premiership 7s in 2011, the Newcastle native has also represented England 7s on the European circuit.
Ben Stevenson
Position in 15s: Centre
Date of birth: 19/7/98
Ben Stevenson recently signed his first full-time contract with the Falcons, having impressed at academy level and in National One for Blaydon. Able to play centre, wing or full-back in 15s, the Yarm School pupil has come through with Middlesbrough RFC and has already represented the Falcons in the A-League despite only turning 18 this week.
Tom Ffitch
Position in 15s: Fly-half
Date of birth: 12/11/97
Tom Ffitch is the only member of the Falcons’ 7s squad not to be contracted full-time with the club, although the fly-half will spend parts of the season with Newcastle alongside his commitments with England’s 7s academy, to whom he is contracted. The 18-year-old is a former Saracens player who was put onto the Falcons’ radar by former fly-half Andy Goode, who coached him at Berkhamsted School.

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