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Rodwell's new job, Fiji's triumph

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Retiring Rodwell decides his future on same day Fiji storm to London success

Long-serving England men’s sevens player James Rodwell will join the coaching team once he retires at the end of the season.

The 34-year-old has been a player-coach throughout the 2018/19 season and earlier this month announced he was going to retire from playing this summer.

He featured at the 2019 HSBC London Sevens where he was awarded the UL Mark of Excellence award for the achievements throughout his career, including an all-time record 92 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series appearances and a record 69 consecutive tournaments.

“I’m really excited by the opportunity to pass on that knowledge on a full-time basis,” said Rodwell.

“I can really concentrate fully on that, develop the young guys and girls coming through who have shown a lot of potential – I’m really looking forward to the opportunity.”

Head of England Sevens Simon Amor was also pleased with the appointment of keeping Rodwell with the England set-up. “We’re delighted that James is going to be joining the sevens programme solely as a coach,” he said.

“He’ll be focusing on the kick-offs, the set pieces and the aerials supporting the men and women players – we’re very lucky to have that experience there.

“He’s had that player-coach role this year and he had to get that balance right but he’s done an amazing job trying to still keep fit so he can deliver in the tournaments.

“For him to just hang up his boots and just focus on the coaching, as it is a real art coaching, I’m sure he’ll be fantastic for both the men’s and women’s programmes.”

Rodwell’s final appearance as a player will come at next weekend’s season-ending leg in Paris. That follows the England leg at Twickenham that was won on Sunday by Fiji, who hammered Australia 43-7 in final.

That victory enabled Fiji to take over at top of series standings – two points clear of USA with one round remaining.

England lie in fifth following a disappointing weekend that culminated in a 29-14 defeat to Japan in the 13th place play-off.

WATCH: Jim Hamilton discusses Trae Williams, the Australian sprinter turned sevens player with a set of legs that look like they are photoshopped

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Retiring Rodwell decides his future on same day Fiji storm to London success