Bailey announces women's sevens squad for Dubai

  • New World Series season starts in Dubai
  • England finished fourth at the tournament last year

England Women Sevens head coach James Bailey has named his squad for the opening leg of the HSBC World Rugby Women's Sevens series in Dubai 30 November-1 December.

Claire Allan captains the England side for the first time at a World Series leg along with former Team GB captain Emily Scarratt and Olympians Emily Scott, Amy Wilson Hardy and Heather Fisher.

Recent Women's Rugby World Cup finalists Alex Matthews, Lydia Thompson, who has been nominated as 2017 World Rugby Women's player of the year, and Megan Jones, who is set to make her first sevens appearance, are also named in the squad.

England are drawn in Pool B with Russia, Australia, who are second in the World Series standings, and Japan.

“I’m really excited to get the season underway, we have got lots of talent in this side and the raw materials to make a great sevens team," said Bailey.

“The World Series will play an important part of our preparation this season, enabling us to continue to grow as a squad, so we are in a position to compete at the Commonwealth Games and World Cup.

"Dubai is a fantastic opportunity to really test us as a squad; it will be a good marker to get a sense of where we are as a team, what are our strengths and where we need to develop.

England finished fourth in last season’s HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Dubai leg and are currently ranked 8th overall in the HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series standings.

England Women Sevens squad:

Claire Allan (c), Alex Matthews, Lydia Thompson, Katie Mason, Emily Scarratt, Deborah Fleming, Heather Fisher. Emily Scott, Chantelle Miell, Megan Jones, Holly Aitchison, Amy Wilson Hardy.

Dubai schedule:

England v Russia, 8:44 am

England v Australia, 12:02 pm

England v Japan, 2.37 pm

(Kick-off times GMT - all games available at and day two on Sky Sports Action)