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Sunday May 4, 2014

Canadian Conor Trainor's sublime foot control at the Glasgow Sevens

With some of the most gifted players in world rugby taking part, the World Sevens Series is a platform to showcase some great skills. Speed and stepping are often at the forefront, but as seen here, footballing ability goes a long way too.

Against France on Day One of the Glasgow Sevens, Trainer was on the end of a drifting pass that was out just a bit too far in front of him. Rather that reach down and possibly risk knocking it on, he did what any incredibly talented player would do – casually controlled and flicked it up with his foot.

He then outran the defence, and glided inside one of France’s best players, Terry Bouhraoua.

The last time we saw something similar to this in the Sevens was when Wales’ Tom Grabham did pretty much the exact same thing against Argentina in 2012, also in Glasgow funnily enough.

On the Test scene Simon Zebo, as mentioned in this clip, did it in the Six Nations with a backheel against two years ago, but it could probably be argued that both Grabham and Trainer’s moments were more impressive and required more control. Football gurus can debate that though.

In last year’s Six Nations Vincent Clerc volleyed a crosskick in-field to nearly set up a try against Scotland, and back in 2009 Lionel Beauxis produced one of the most sublime bits of skill seen on a rugby field, as he volleyed and controlled the ball with ease against Bath.

Dimitri Yachvili has also backheeled a pass to set up a try before, and last year Munster’s Rohan O’Mahony flicked the ball up to James Coughlan to set up a try. There was all sorts of debate about whether that was intentional or not, so you can take a look and add your two cents on that post.

The theme with all of these efforts is that while size, physicality and fitness as so key to rugby these days, there’s still place and appreciation for the showman, and those with incredible skill.

Enjoy Trainer’s effort below, and the other moments mentioned in the Related Posts below that

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