Northampton Saints may have made several changes to their Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series Finals squad, but new skipper George Furbank insists they will still be a force to be reckoned with at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday.
Saints sealed their quarter-final spot against Exeter Chiefs in thrilling fashion, downing two-time champions Gloucester Rugby in a straight shoot-out in front of 10,022 fans at Franklin’s Gardens.
And though some of that side will not be present in Coventry, Furbank insists they have enough strength in depth to be real contenders for the trophy.
“We are a young team but one with a lot of potential. Hopefully things will click on Sunday and we come away with some silverware,” said the full-back.
“It will be interesting for me because I have not been captain before. I am glad they have shown that trust in me and I am looking forward to it.
“My role is to help everyone glue together because we have a lot of different people, some from England and some from Loughborough so I need to let them play their A game and let them get on with it.
“It will be a great experience and teach me a lot going forwards.”
Saints finished as runners-up in Group C to Harlequins and face a daunting task against the unbeaten Chiefs, who possess the likes of first-team winger Matt Jess.
But Furbank has a few tricks up his sleeve and is confident his side will overcome Exeter and go deep into the tournament.
“It was a really good atmosphere at Franklin’s Gardens and we played some good 7s rugby. It was great to get through the group,” he said.
“After six weeks of pre-season nothing compared to getting a run out and we were blowing hard at the end of the first ones.
“I played Exeter’s 15s in the final of the A league last season and they have a lot of power and pace in their side and that will be tough to deal with.
“But hopefully we will get through that, blow off some cobwebs and take it game by game.
“We know a few of their players but I would not say it is an advantage, they are all good players.
“We just need to work on getting the ball in attack, keeping hold of it through multiple phases and building properly. If we do that, we’ll be okay.”
Eight teams will play for the first silverware of the season in the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series Finals from 2pm at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry on Sunday 7 August. For tickets visit wasps.co.uk/tickets