Full Roster announcement for inaugural 2020 Major League Rugby Season
ATLANTA, GA – Rugby ATL is excited to announce its full roster ahead of their inaugural 2020 season in Major League Rugby (MLR). The team is comprised of a mix of young premier players from rugby hotbeds with national-level talent developed on fields all over the US. Players reported to preseason practice in early December, and are preparing for their first Major League Rugby exhibition game at 3pm on Jan 12th vs New Orleans NOLA Gold team (ticket go on sale Jan 1). The regular season kicks off 3pm Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, at Rugby ATL Stadium in Marietta when the Utah Warriors come to town.
Atlanta is tackling the league headfirst by building a team from the ground up in a city that has been a big supporter of rugby and is primed to support its first professional rugby team. General Manager and Head Coach Scott Lawrence believe the 36-man roster of experienced domestic and international professional players will bring excitement to Atlanta.
“Our 2020 roster is full of young talented players with the work ethic required to play a high speed, exciting brand of rugby. There’s simply no superstars in this group, just super people who we already know will play for each other and our fans,” said Lawrence.
Rugby ATL is committed to delivering on its mission of excellence day in and day out, on and off the field, along with providing a fantastic game-day experience and fan engagement program.
A few Rugby ATL roster highlights include:
- Harry Higgins and Chance Wenglewski are capped as US Eagles. Chance Wenglewski rostered with USA Rugby for the 2019 World Cup in Japan
- Harley Wheeler won the Rudy Scholz Award for 2018-19 leading Life University as D1A Rugby National Champions for the second year in a row
- Several players on the roster are from the US Southeast region, including Rugby ATL’s Marietta- native Jason Damm
- The roster includes eight Division 1 Collegiate All-Americans
- Both Conor Keys and Matt Heaton were nominated for Rugby Canada’s Player of the Year and played in the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan
- Matt Heaton also won the 2017 Rugby Canada’s Player of the Year
The coaching staff brings decades of experience to Rugby ATL. Lawrence is a former USA Eagles player and his assistants include Valenese Malifa and Blake Bradford. Malifa runs the Defense and Skills and has played in three Rugby World Cups. Blake Bradford runs the Forwards and Tackle Contact Area (TCA).
“Rugby ATL is more than just players and staff, we are ambassadors for the City of Atlanta and we take that role seriously,” says President and CEO Bob Taylor. “We are excited about our future here in Atlanta.”
For more information on Rugby ATL and the upcoming 2020 schedule, please visit www.rugbyatl.rugby/schedule . 2020 Season Tickets are now available including the best seating and benefits. To sign up for email alerts please go to the bottom of the home page and submit your information to be among the first to know about happenings with Rugby ATL.
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