England's magnificent seven
By Ben Blackmore. Last Updated: 05/06/06 4:04pm
While England prepare to test some of their emerging talents in the challenging atmosphere of the Telstra Stadium on Sunday, Jon Callard insists a true star-in-the-making is currently in Canada with the England Saxons.
Saracens' David Seymour is the man earning rave reviews from Callard, who believes the openside flanker can finally fill the void left by the retirement of World Cup-winner Neil Back.
Seymour has been a revelation for the England Sevens this season, while his presence at club level has become increasingly influential to Sarries' ball retention.
Callard believes England boss Andy Robinson needs to turn away from the ball-carrying abilities of a Lewis Moody, in order to provide quicker ball for the likes of Mark Cueto and Josh Lewsey to feed on.
"Look at his pathway," stated the former Bath man. "He had a good under-21 career, he has won things under Mike Friday with the England Sevens and demonstrated what he can do with the Saxons.
"Surely the next step now for him is England. He is an out-and-out seven and in my limited view he is a genuine prospect.
"Unfortunately the view in the modern game is that a seven needs to carry the ball and jump in the lineout.
"I'm a believer that if you want to play an expansive game and keep the ball moving you have to have an out-and-out seven.
"You want a player who can sniff the ball out, get over it, support play and link play - do all the classic things a fantastic seven does.
"David has one position, one role and he does it very well. It will be interesting to see whether his style is what is needed at the next level up."
England Saxons will exit the Churchill Cup if Canada fail to beat Scotland A in Ottawa on Wednesday.