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AJT Rugby Team in Middlesex 7's

14th August 2010

Many thanks to the WRU and Middlesex 7s for their great support

Wales Sevens coach Paul John took a Welsh rugby squad, competing under the temporary name of Amser Justin Time (Wales Development) Sevens Squad, to the Middlesex 7s invitation charity tournament at Twickenham for the first time in the 84-year history of the competition and used it as preparation for the season ahead.

But rather than compete as simply ‘Wales' against sides from the English Premiership like Harlequins and Wasps as well as representations from the British Army, England, Scotland and Kenya, John's team played under the ‘Amser Justin Time' banner.

Amser Justin Time is the Pancreatic Cancer Charity for Wales and is particularly close the hearts and minds of the family of former Wales Sevens coach and Bridgend hooker Colin Hillman, who passed away from the disease in 2009 aged just 46
Wales' Amser Justin Time side started the day against the tournament's inaugural winners Harlequins - who finished victorious at the first event in 1926.

"We are treating this very much as preparation for what will be a tough season ahead. It will be our first experience of the Middlesex Sevens as a squad and the first time we have been able to prepare in this way pre-season but it is a knockout tournament and if you lose your first two games that's it you go home, so we will have to be right on our mettle," said John.

"It's all for a good cause and fans can actually contribute to the Amser Justin Time charity"
"When we were asked what name we wanted to compete under we thought of Colin straight away, he died just last year and was a hugely positive influence on the Sevens game in Wales, including on our Rugby World Cup Sevens victory."

Colin Hilman, the former Wales Sevens team national coach and ex Bridgend hooker Colin Hillman died in July 2009 at the age of 46 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.

He had been associated with rugby throughout his life winning international caps for Welsh Schools and Welsh Youth before going on to captain the senior Wales Sevens team. For most of his senior playing career he was hooker for Bridgend but also played for the Barbarians, Swansea, South Wales Police, Bridgend Sports and Merthyr rugby clubs.

Colin Hillman was part of rugby history when he played for the Wales Youth team which defeated South Africa Youth 30-25 at the Newlands ground, Cape Town on May 31, 1980 in a curtain raiser match before the British and Irish Lions played the Springboks. Two of his team-mates that day were future internationals Bleddyn Bowen and Ray Giles and the game remains the only Welsh international win against a South African international team on South African soil
After his playing days he turned to coaching significantly at Nantymoel rugby club and became Director of Rugby at the Bridgend Ravens while featuring on the international stage as the Wales Sevens coach.

He remained Director of Rugby at Bridgend and was still a WRU Technical Advisor to the Wales Sevens team at the time of his death.

Away from rugby he worked as a South Wales Police officer and served for a significant part of his career as a South Wales Police Armed Response Officer.

He presented the jerseys to the Wales squad before they headed to Dubai and won the Rugby World Cup Sevens for the first time in March 2009. His reputation around the world of rugby was emphasised when he was asked to help develop Sevens rugby for the Spanish international team.