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Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018

Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018: USA ready to deliver in San Francisco – ‘the beast within is coming out’

Speedster Perry Baker on the importance of the US putting on a good show at AT&T Park this weekend

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 July, 2018, 9:03pm
UPDATED : Friday, 20 July, 2018, 9:02pm

They have been building the Rugby World Cup Sevens up all season and the time has arrived for the United States to make their mark while the sport is in the shop window.

Try machine Perry Baker is at the forefront of that charge and the speedster says “the sky is the limit” for rugby in the US, while retired veteran Zack Test issued a warning about what is to come.

“We are just scratching the surface,” Test said in part one of The Pioneers, a documentary following the USA Sevens’ World Cup journey which was released this week.

“We have such amazing athletes and from where we were six or seven years ago with amateurs becoming professionals to where we are today, Perry Baker, Carlin Isles, Danny Barrett, they are just the start of what it could be. The beast within is coming out and people should be afraid.”

Baker says he has already noticed an increase in support for the team, but knows it is a victory in San Francisco this weekend that will make the real difference.

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“Everyone likes winning. Right now, when we are trying to get something going, you have got to make it good. How do you make it good? By winning,” Baker told the South China Morning Post.

“Everyone is getting onto it, wanting to be a part of it and wanting to know when we play again.

“It’s a long time coming, we’ve be looking forward to the World Cup all season and now it’s actually here. Everyone’s excited about it and ready for it.”

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Baker knows a lot must go right for the US to overcome the likes of Fiji and South Africa, saying the team has to stay relaxed and avoid getting caught up in the hype.

He struggled to put into words what a World Cup victory would mean to him personally: “It’s something you can’t really describe. I would be ecstatic to be a part of such a group that is doing things that people didn’t believe would be done.

“To be part of that history, it just feels so good to share our story and show that dedication and hard work pay off.

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“People ask ‘what do you mean?’ and I’m like ‘rugby came from nowhere, how did it get here? Because the guys sacrificed before us and the guys that are here now that sacrifice and dedicate so much to make this game grow in the States’.

“It would feel so good to win it and say ‘we did it guys, everything we’ve been through has been worth it’.”