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Teams announced for Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse First Boston Hong Kong Sevens 2004

Search ASIA Travel Tips .com 27 January 2004

The Hong Kong Rugby Football Union (HKRFU) today announced the line-up of participating teams for the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse First Boston Hong Kong Sevens 2004 to be held between March 26 - 28 at the Hong Kong Stadium.

The line-up for this year's Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse First Boston Hong Kong Sevens features the traditional assembly of the world's leading sevens superpowers including last year's defending IRB Sevens champions, New Zealand, and returning Hong Kong Sevens champions, England. The Hong Kong Rugby Football Union also welcomes South Africa, who along with England and New Zealand are tied-first overall in the IRB Sevens Series, as well as a tough new international competitors Georgia, making their debut performance at the Hong Kong Sevens. 

Participating teams for the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse First Boston Hong Kong Sevens 2004 have been selected in consultation with the IRB and include:

 

Argentina Australia Canada
China Chinese Taipei Cook Islands
England Fiji France
Georgia Hong Kong Italy
Japan Kenya Korea
Namibia New Zealand Portugal
Samoa Scotland Singapore
South Africa Thailand USA

    The Official Draw for the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse First Boston Hong Kong Sevens 2004, the fifth of 8 tournaments in the 2003/2004 IRB Sevens, will be held on the evening of 26 February, 2004 at Exchange Square in Central.

This year's event marks the 29th year of sevens rugby in Hong Kong and the HKRFU will celebrate next year's 30th anniversary in style by hosting the IRB's 2005 Rugby World Cup Sevens, becoming the first international rugby union to host two World Cup Sevens events.

Widely recognized as the premier tournament in the IRB Sevens, the Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse First Boston Hong Kong Sevens remains the only 24-team tournament on this year's 8-event international circuit. As such, the Hong Kong Sevens offers elevated series points for the winners, with Cup winners in Hong Kong receiving 30 championship points as opposed to the 20 customary in the standard 16-team events. The event's US$150,000 prize purse continues to attract the most international and competitive field in the IRB Sevens, while its premier status was again confirmed with the IRB's announcement that Hong Kong will host its second Rugby World Cup Sevens in 2005, becoming the first international Union to host two RWC Sevens events.

In response to fans' great demand on ticket sales, the HKRFU has decided this year to continuously sell tickets earlier and through a variety of methods including online sales, which begin on 9 February 2004. Tickets can be purchased from the Official Sevens Merchandise and Ticket Outlet at the Landmark in Central and via the HKRFU's Sevens website, from 9 February. For a 6th consecutive year, ticket prices will remain at HK$750 for adults and HK$250 for children up to 12 for the three-day sevens extravaganza.

The HKRFU also unveiled a new Sevens Song Campaign which invites Hong Kong people to suggest their favourite songs to be played during match intervals on-event, and an 'Adopt-a-Student' programme which gives local students a chance to watch the Friday night action, as well as its latest promotional event for the Hong Kong Sevens, the 2004 Rugby Sevens Carnival scheduled for 22 February 2004 at King's Park. Along with live bands, family entertainment activities are planned including clowns and face-painting. The Carnival will also feature a series of sevens matches from mini rugby through to senior level, including women's rugby and a Sevens-esque 'march past' for participating teams. This year's Sevens Carnival replaces the travelling Sevens Roadshow with the exception of the traditional exhibition at Pacific Place during the week of the event. 

The Union has also confirmed that the popular Racing with Rugby event inaugurated last year at Happy Valley will again be held on 10 March 2004.

In a new international promotion for the event, the first ever official Hong Kong Sevens stamp will be jointly launched by Hong Kong Post and New Zealand Post at the end of February.

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