Wootton aiming to make sevens impression
Munster are gunning for the Limerick World Club 7s title on home turf this weekend and captain Alex Wootton believes the event can be a springboard to XVs success.
Thomond Park plays host to 12 teams from all around the world, including all four Irish provinces, today and tomorrow as they try to follow in the footsteps of last year's champions Daveta (Fiji).
Munster's 12-man squad features a mix of academy, sub-academy and club talent but Wootton is adamant they have the ability to emerge from a pool featuring Canadian Maples, San Francisco Golden Gate and invitational touring side Samurai. And with first-team coaches watching closely, the 21-year-old is keen to impress by going all the way and lifting the trophy tomorrow evening.
"The aim is to win the tournament - it's in our own backyard and we're not just here to make up the numbers," explained Wootton. "We're here to play rugby and it's a chance for us young lads to go out there and show what we can do with a Munster jersey on. We'll work hard and hopefully get our rewards at the end of the weekend.
"Pulling on the Munster jersey and being captain is an incredibly proud moment for me and my family who are coming to the event. There will definitely be some boys putting their hand up, hopefully there will be some coaches watching up above and it will help us for selection for the XVs side of things."
Wootton was born in Macclesfield, Cheshire and played some age-group rugby for England before switching allegiances to Ireland and earning a move from Northampton Saints to Munster.
The versatile back has been a key part of Ireland U-20s as well as being a regular fixture in the Ireland Sevens team trying to secure qualification for next year's Olympic Games in Rio.
"We've got a couple of international boys in the squad to watch out for - someone like Jack Cullen has played for Ireland U-19s and U-20s and he's a nice player, a bit of a playmaker," added Wootton.