Thu, 7 April 2016

Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens a Dress Rehearsal for Rio 2016

This yearís Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens will provide an interesting dress rehearsal for Rugby Sevensí debut at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in August, with all eleven presently qualified menís teams taking part in a three-day format that will replicate the Games competition in Brazil.

 A further 11 of the 16 teams taking part in the final menís Olympic qualifier in Monaco in June are also participating at the sold-out Hong Kong Stadium this weekend.

There are 28 teams taking part in this yearís Sevens, which will play host to the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series competition amongst the 15 teams on the Series and South Korea, invited by World Rugby as the 16th team in the lead tournament.

A 12-team international qualifier competition featuring two teams from each of World Rugbyís six regions will also be held this weekend. The winner of that competition will be promoted to next yearís HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. Cayman Islands become the 60th nation to have participated in the Hong Kong Sevens since its inception in 1976.

120,000 spectators are expected to attend across the three days of the tournament in 2016, which will push total attendance on this yearís Series past half a million spectators, according to World Rugby Competitions & Events Manager for Sevens Douglas Langley.

ďWhat a series we've had so far - by every measure it has been the biggest and best yet. It is no coincidence that this weekend already we will pass 500,000 spectators, and ultimately smash the total attendance record for the season by close to 150,000,Ē Langley said. ďAnd what a spectacle the fans have watched... On the pitch, it could not be tighter at the top, with three points separating the top three sides - Fiji, South Africa and New Zealand - but all the teams and athletes continue to do the sport proud.Ē

Fiji enter Hong Kong as the Series leaders on 106 points, one ahead of second-placed South Africa who are in turn one point ahead of hard-charging New Zealand, winners of three of the last four tournaments played. A resurgent Australia and an emerging United States round out the top five spots on the Series.

The near-parity in the Series makes a win in Hong Kong even more important for the teams and a pivotal factor in determining who will run out Series champions. The Cup winner in Hong Kong will receive 22 points towards their Series standings, while the runners-up are awarded 19 points. Third and fourth place finishers receive 17 and 15 points respectively.

A separate 12-team World Rugby Sevens Series qualification tournament will also be played.

The 12 qualifier teams (two from each of the six International Rugby Board regions) are Hong Kong and Japan from Asia, Germany and Spain from Europe, Tonga and Papua New Guinea from Oceania, Morocco and Zimbabwe from Africa, Mexico and Cayman Islands from North America and the Caribbean, and Brazil and Chile from South America.

HKRU Chairman, Mr Pieter Schats, said, ďThe continued development of all of the teams on the World Series points to another fascinating tournament ahead and an even more exciting prospect when Rugby Sevens makes its Olympic debut in Rio in August. This weekendís competition will provide a glimpse of the excitement ahead for the Olympic family with all 11 of the 12 qualified teams for Rio taking the pitch in Hong Kong.Ē

Seventy menís matches will be played as part of this yearís tournament. The Cup final of the Hong Kong Womenís Rugby Sevens will be played on Friday evening at 17.24 for a total of 71 matches.

 The Cathay Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens 2016 has sold out for a 13th consecutive year.

Other pages about the 2016 Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens: Pictures from 2016 Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, Hong Kong Sevens - Interview with Luc Bollen, GM of The Park Lane Hong Kong, Fiji Beat New Zealand to Win 2016 Hong Kong Sevens, South Africa Beat France to Win Hong Kong Women's Rugby Sevens, France and Japan Look Strong After Day 1 of Hong Kong Women's Rugby Sevens, Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens a Dress Rehearsal for Rio 2016, Hong Kong Sevens 2016 to Honour Beth Coalter and Jonah Lomu, HKRU Brings Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens to Central, Hong Kong Rugby Union Names Men's and Women's Sevens Squads, Natasha Olson-Thorne to Captain Hong Kong Women's Rugby Sevens Team, HKRU Launches Professional 15s Platform; Leigh Jones to Head Programme, Hong Kong Sevens 2016 Official Draw: South Africa Top Seeds in Pool B with Scotland, England and Russia, HKRU Confirms Teams Participating in Hong Kong Women's Rugby Sevens 2016, HKRU Confirms Teams for 2016 Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong SevensDavid Hasselhoff, The Proclaimers and Bjorn Again to Perform at Hong Kong Sevens, Public Ballot System for Hong Kong Sevens 2016 Tickets Opens. See pictures from the HK7s in 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012.

Rugby pictures: Pictures from 2017 Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, Pictures from 2016 Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, Pictures of Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens 2015, Pictures of the Asia Rugby Sevens Olympic Games Qualifier in Hong Kong, Pictures of Singha Thailand Sevens 2015, Pictures from the 2013 British & Irish Lions Tour in Hong Kong, Pictures of Hong Kong Sevens 2014, Pictures of Hong Kong Sevens 2013, Pictures of Chartis Cup 2012 and Pictures of Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens 2012.

See other recent news regarding: Cathay Pacific, HSBC, Hong Kong, Rugby, Sevens

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