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Happy to be Home, Eagles Ready to Play Says Campbell

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Happy to be Home, Eagles Ready to Play Says Campbell

Bryce Campbell, at right wearing #12, in the rain in Santiago. Photo Rugby Chile.

For the last two-and-a-half days the USA Men's 15s team has been hard at work preparing for Saturday's second World Cup Qualifier game with Chile.

Thursday will be a day off and Friday will be the captain's run, so these last few days has been where much of the work, video analysis, classroom time, and time on the field, has been done.

"The intensity of what we're doing is just as high, but they've not been as long to give us more time to recover," said USA center Bryce Campbell. "But we're been working hard these past two, two-and-a-half days."

Campbell, in his interview with GRR, was all smiles, and he confessed it was partly due to being back home in the USA.

"Summer in Colorado and winter in Chile," he said, giving a nod to the cold, rainy, muddy game the Eagles played against the Condors this past weekend.

USA Holds On By a Point Over Chile in the Rain and Darkness

 "The conditions ... it was just a mess," Campbell said of the Estadio Santa Laura field. "But it was also fun. It reminded me of playing rugby when I was a kid, playing on fields that were in all kinds of condition. And you can't overstate how tough it is going into Chile with the crowd and the conditions. But, we did win the game. We could have done better but we're back on home soil and we bring a lot of learnings with us." 

 

They are also looking at the firm, all-grass field at Infinity Park and thinking about what they can do to exploit it.

"We are so excited to be able to play some rugby," said Campbell, who strongly hinted that the kicking game will not be as front-and-center as it was last week. "We have more of the understanding of what Chile is about and hopefully we'll get some good weather and we can play some rugby."

The mood within the squad is confident, and in familiar surrounding, with what promises to be a big and loud crowd in Glendale, the Eagles are in position to put this qualifier series to bed.

In the last seven Rugby World Cup Series, the Eagles have done much better at home than on the road. On the road the USA was 1-4-2 with a points-for-and-against of 145-199, while at home they were 6-1, with a PF-PA of 189-114. Only once (2013 vs Canada) did they do worse at home than on the road. So winning on the road, even by just a point, is a rarity. But winning at home? Well let's just say they are in a better position.