Former Australian international and sevens star Glen Ella has been taken around the world to compete for his country, but now he will travel to all corners of his own country to find the next rugby sevens star.
The former Wallaby is part of Australia’s #dreamBigTime search from next week. The programme is designed to find the best talent in the indigenous areas of the country.
Ella begins his search in Orange and Bathurst next week, before stopping in Nyngan on Thursday. In whole, the two-week tour will see the project hopefully unearth talent in firstly Wilcannia, Walgett, and Brewarrina before finishing the search by heading off to Southern and Northern territories of Australia; concluding in Alice Springs.
Speaking to the Nyngan Observer, Ella said: “That’s where a high population of Aboriginal people are, and I haven’t been to a lot of those towns like Brewarrina and Bourke.
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“I’m so excited to go out and meet new people and chat to them. But also we’re certainly looking for good players to give them a chance.”
Following the conclusion of the road trip, the top 130 talents will fly into Sydney for a four-day camp in July. Here all their skills will be tested in front of a panel of renowned coaches.
The vigorous competition will heat up when two squads of 20 players are chosen to represent two First Nations Sevens teams; both will compete in two international and five domestic competitions.
Eventually, the long-term goal of the project is to find at least two players that can join the Australian Sevens squad for the Paris Olympics in 2024.
Ella concluded: “Aboriginal people play an exciting style and rugby is a global game with Olympic Games in the sevens the pinnacle for any sportsman.”
Main photo credit: England Rugby