Another name to add to Bakkies' list is prop Kieran Longbottom. England seriously thought about naming him as a back up last year, since he qualifies for us through his gran. Australia had been on touch before he left but couldn't keep him.
Sevens is an odd sport, because it's not the matches which are the draw card but the whole day's play. I've enjoyed watching a lot of the code but individual matches rarely leave lasting memories.
Call me crazy, but the closest sporting experience I've had to watching sevens is a sumo tournament. In sumo, each bout is usually over in seconds but they have a meaning in the context of a two week tournament.
That makes it a very different proposition to other team sports. A decent tournament needs at least half a dozen sides all in one place so teams will only occasionally enjoy home advantage, playing in front of their own supporters. Consequently, a lot of the usual dynamics behind sport as an attraction are absent from sevens.
You sound like you know what you are talking about, Birdy, so I'll stand corrected.
I was pleased to hear Cockerill talk about the need to support their man. He recognizes that the onus will be on Manu to regain trust, but he's aware that treating him like a pariah will be counter-productive.