Scottish number eight is Bright spark for England's Commonwealth campaign (From This Is Local London)
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Scottish number eight is Bright spark for England's Commonwealth campaign
London Scottish number eight Mark Bright has called being named in the England Sevens squad for the Commonwealth Games as the highlight of his career.
The 35-year-old forward, who has been on loan to the RFU this summer, made the cut for head coach Simon Amor's party bound for Glasgow later this month and celebrated by signing a one-year contract extension at the Athletic Ground.
Bright has impressed during the FIRA-AER European GP Sevens series, which saw England win a third successive Moscow Sevens title last month, and will now try and help his adopted country win a medal at the Games, with the rugby competition getting underway on July 26.
“I don’t think I can put anything above this in my rugby career," said the talismanic Kiwi.
“It’s a big moment for myself and my family and hopefully I can do them proud.
“It has been a tough couple of months, but I’m delighted all the hard work has paid off.
“All the England boys have made it easy for me to fit in and I cannot wait to get to Glasgow.
“There are plenty of countries that are capable of winning medals, so we need to be firing from the off.”
London Scottish director of rugby Mike Friday, who coached England to Commonwealth silver at in 2006, said: “This is a fantastic achievement for Brighty.
“The call-up is a testament to his ability to cope in a very demanding rugby environment and I have no doubt he will rise to the challenge.
“It’s a young man’s game but he is like a fine wine which gets better with age.
“He is ultra-competitive and will be giving everything to ensure England get on top of that podium.”
Bright’s new contract extension at London Scottish means he will remain at London Scottish until at least the end of the 2015/16 season.
The number eight will also continue as first team captain for the coming campaign, a role he has thrived in for the past two seasons.
Bright has been a key player at the exiles since moving from Redruth in 2011 and has made the Championship’s Dream XV in each of the past two years.
He scored 21 tries in 28 games last season and it was no surprise when he claimed the Caledonia Best Taste of Scotland supporters' player of the year award at the club’s end of season dinner.
“I am really happy to have extended my contract at London Scottish although it was a very easy decision to make," added Bright.
“My family and I are really settled in London and I am looking forward to the next couple of seasons.
“We made huge strides last year and the target this season is to build on that and push for the top four.”
“It is always great to be given the captaincy of Scottish and a fantastic honour.
“I enjoyed a pretty good season last year and I will look to try and replicate that once again.
“With both Bristol and Worcester in the division it will be a really tough league, but also equally exciting.”
Friday said: “Mark has been fantastic for the squad, captains from the front and is a natural leader of men.
“He is a warrior for London Scottish and players want to follow him.
“He was outstanding last season and that’s testament to how he looks after himself. It was an easy decision to extend his contract.”
He added: “Brighty is part of the DNA here and typifies the values associated with this great club.”