Fixtures - Top Bar

Tom Shanklin backs Welsh youngsters to flourish at Singha 7s

Grand Slam winning centre Tom Shanklin says there is no experience like the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series for Wales’ budding stars.

Former Cardiff Blues centre Shanklin will see the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series return to his former stomping ground, BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park, when they host the first leg of this year’s competition on July 22.

Established first-teamers such as flyer Dan Fish have starred in the competition in the past, but Shanklin is most excited for the next batch of exhilarating youngsters to emerge from Danny Wilson’s stable.

And the 70-cap international thinks the pressure-cooker environment of top-level rugby 7s is the perfect means to ensure youngsters go on to succeed as professionals.

“It’s brilliant, there’s no other competition for the Welsh regions to play in sevens-wise, they have a sevens competition a tier below but it’s a good experience for youngsters because they get to play in front of a large crowd which they won’t be used to,” the 36-year-old said. 

“Cory Allen and Alex Cuthbert both came through the Sevens circuit. I’d like to see a bit of a mix of youth and experience.

“It’s a good experience and a stepping stone for those guys to get excited about playing, against Premiership teams, which they don’t always get with their regions because they are young so it’s a good opportunity.”

With Rio 2016 just around the corner and rugby 7s appearing for the first time in Olympic history, Shanklin believes BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park could become a mini-Rio for the day come July 22.

With Newport Gwent Dragons upsetting the odds in last year’s Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series to beat a high-class Wasps side in the final, Shanklin hopes Blues can replicate that success and secure a spot at the Ricoh Arena final on August 7.

He said: “It was great for the Dragons last year. They rightly won the Cardiff leg and to go and beat Wasps, who were a pretty full-strength Wasps team, it was great for their confidence.

“You want to see the youngsters coming through, getting that experience. If they progress further they will get the chance to play at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry which is an incredible venue.

“We’re just trying to create a big buzz around the sevens, and especially with Rio around the corner, people are starting to take a big interest in sevens.

“The Olympics is just around the corner so we’re trying to create a festival, a Rio festival at the Singha Premiership Rugby Sevens at the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park and hopefully we’ll get quite a few people through the door.”

The Singha Premiership Rugby 7s kicks off on 22 July at Cardiff Arms Park with the Finals at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday 7 August. For tickets and details visit

Latest News

Tom Heathcote extends his stay at Worcester Warriors

Worcester Warriors are delighted to announce that Scotland international Tom Heathcote has put pen to paper on a new contract…

Tom Heathcote

Minimum standards criteria results

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has considered the findings of an independent audit report of the Greene King IPA Championship…

World Rugby welcomes Berlin Consensus Statement on concussion in sport

Expert group publishes comprehensive review of scientific papers on concussion Rugby continues to be aligned with recommended best practice Cross-sport…

Mark Lambert issues rallying call for Harlequins’ top-six push

A third season in a row without top flight European rugby is not an option for a club of Harlequins’…

Gloucester’s Henry Trinder: Top-six place at stake adds to West Country derby

Gloucester will be travelling to The Rec for their West Country derby against Bath in the Aviva Premiership on Sunday…

Henry Trinder

Referee appointments: Barnes, Garner and Doyle all in action

Three of Aviva Premiership Rugby’s most experienced referees will take to the field this weekend as another highly-charged round of…

The Premiership Rugby Final Photographic competition

To mark exactly one month to go to the 15th Premiership Rugby Final, on 27 May, Premiership Rugby are holding a…

Owen Farrell

Wasps team to play Harlequins at The Stoop

Director of Rugby Dai Young has named his side to travel to The Twickenham Stoop on Friday night to face…

Josh Bassett

Newcastle Falcons team to face Worcester Warriors

Sonatane Takulua returns as one of five changes to Newcastle Falcons’ team for Friday’s Aviva Premiership visit of Worcester Warriors…

Sonatane Takulua

Heem returns for Worcester Warriors for Newcastle Falcons trip

Worcester Warriors have made four changes to the starting line-up ahead of Friday night’s trip to Kingston Park to take…

Bryce Heem

Harlequins team to play Wasps

Harlequins has announced the team to play Wasps in Round 21 of the Aviva Premiership at The Stoop tomorrow, kick-off…

Nick Evans

Ian Evans to retire from professional rugby

Based on medical advice, Ian Evans has regrettably had to retire from professional rugby following fifteen years in the sport.…

Ian Evans

Saracens to bid farewell to legendary pair against Bristol

On Saturday afternoon Saracens will bid a final farewell to two of the club’s most revered players, with Kelly Brown…

Kelly Brown

Jon Fisher to take a break from professional rugby

Jonathan Fisher, by mutual agreement with Bristol Rugby, has opted to take time out to assess his playing career following…

Jon Fisher

Planning Application for Allianz Park West Stand Improvement Approved by Barnet Council

Saracens are pleased to announce that planning application to improve Allianz Park has now been approved by Barnet Council at…

Allianz Park

Fruean expecting extra special derby for Bath Rugby

The contrasting fortunes of Bath Rugby and Gloucester Rugby in their respective European Challenge Cup semi-finals will add extra spice…

Fitzgerald confident Leicester Tigers can go all the way to Aviva Premiership Rugby Final

Leicester Tigers’ Mike Fitzgerald admits it’s been a tricky year for the club on and off the pitch but is…

Sale Sharks’ Denny Solomona licking his lips at chance to join England ranks

Sale Sharks’ Denny Solomona admits he is relishing the chance to taste international rugby following his inclusion in England’s squad…

Mark Wilson out to help Newcastle Falcons to 15-year high

Having been at the forefront of their improved efforts this season, Mark Wilson is determined to help Newcastle Falcons to…

Mark Wilson