Competition in the centres at Harlequins is stronger than ever and Harry Sloan knows he will have to take every chance presented to him to impress the coaches – starting with the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s.
Jordan Turner-Hall may have announced his retirement this week but Sloan still has the likes of George Lowe, Matt Hopper and Tom Casson for competition in midfield – and that is without mentioning Quins’ high-profile recruit, Jamie Roberts.
The two-time British & Irish Lion arrives at the Stoop from France this season and will take some shifting from the Quins midfield, meaning Sloan has his work cut out for him.
And with the Singha 7s first on the radar in terms of competitive rugby, the 21-year-old is desperate to press his claims in pre-season.
“In pre-season you’re developing your endurance and skillset, so the 7s is a great opportunity to put that into practice and a great opportunity for clubs to get some silverware before the season.
“As a young player, you want to show the coaches why you should be in the first team and you can show off some individual brilliance.
“It’s a great opportunity for young players because it’s often the first opportunity they are going to get to impress before being exposed to first-team rugby.
“They can show the coaches why you should be in the first-team set-up – there is more opportunity to show what you can do.
“At Harlequins we’re an offloading team and play at a fast tempo and 7s is built around that. You can take that into the XVs set-up.”
With fixtures taking place at five different grounds throughout August, the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series is a great way to enjoy some thrilling, high octane rugby with friends and family.
It is also the only competition this season where you will see the 12 Premiership Rugby clubs taking on the four Welsh Regions.
Quins are yet to lift the 7s title – which is in its fifth year – but with the final again at the Stoop and after a semi-final defeat last year they will be looking to go one better and make the showpiece event.
This year sees them take on Northampton Saints, Saracens and hosts Wasps at the Ricoh Arena on Friday August 21.
Last year Quins faced the same three opponents in group play at Franklin's Gardens, winning three from three to qualify for the Final.
But it was Gloucester Rugby who emerged victorious at the Stoop, the Cherry & Whites claiming their second successive title after beating Newport Gwent Dragons in the final.