Rugby Sevens

Aussie Sevens topple World Champions

Sunday December 6, 2009 by  

The Australian Rugby Sevens team have beaten defending champions South Africa 7-0 to claim the Plate trophy at the iRB Sevens World Series in Dubai overnight (Sunday AEDT).

Coach Michael O’Connor’s youthful side put yesterday’s disappointing 29-nil loss to the Springbok Sevens behind them and gave a brilliant performance to claim the 12 tournament points on offer in front of 40,000 spectators at ‘The Sevens’ stadium.

Series debutant Clinton Sills scored the only try of the match deep into overtime in the first half and Bernard Foley kicked the conversion to give Australia their match winning score-line.

Sills’s try took his series tally to nine which crowned him the tournament’s equal highest tryscorer with New Zealand’s Sherwin Stowers. Read more

Aussies through to Dubai Quarterfinals

Saturday December 5, 2009 by  

Australia are through to the quarter-finals of the Dubai Rugby Sevens but were handed a reality check from defending tournament champions South Africa in their final pool match on Saturday (AEDT).

Coach Michael O’Connor’s youthful side finished second in their pool with solid victories over Wales and the Arabian Gulf and will face Samoa in the first of tomorrow’s Cup quarterfinals.

Australia made the best possible start to the iRB Sevens World Series when they defeated Arabian Gulf 47-7 in their opening match.

They backed up their strong first performance with a 14-7 victory over reigning Sevens World Cup champions Wales. Read more

Coach backs Sevens rookies to shine

Wednesday December 2, 2009 by  

Australian Rugby Sevens coach Michael O’Connor says his youthful squad is eager to step out onto the world stage and perform when the iRB Sevens World Series kicks off in Dubai on Friday.

O’Connor’s 12-man team has an average age of just 20 and only two players – captain Patrick McCutcheon and utility back Brian Sefanaia – have previous experience on the eight-leg Sevens circuit.

Junior NSW Waratahs and Sydney University flanker McCutcheon made his debut on the Sevens circuit in 2007 and will look to the experience of fellow series regular Sefanaia during the two-day event as ten of their teammates make their international debut.

Despite his side’s inexperience, O’Connor is full of confidence his talented rookies will make the step-up at the two-day long tournament. Read more

Rookies dominate Sevens squad

Monday November 23, 2009 by  

Australian Rugby Sevens coach Michael O’Connor has named 10 rookies in his 18-man squad to compete in the IRB Sevens World Series which kicks off in Dubai on December 4.

Australian rugby fans can catch the action close to home when Adelaide hosts the Australian leg from March 19-21. Full tournament schedule below.

Fresh talent has been injected into the Sevens program with the likes of fullback Zack Holmes, utility back Edward Quirk and playmaker Jacob Taylor set to make their debut at the Dubai tournament alongside series regular Brian Sefanaia and captain Patrick McCutcheon.

Quirk is the youngest member of the Australian squad at 18; he was snapped up by the Queensland Reds Academy after showcasing his talent in 2008 while representing Queensland and Australia as a Schoolboy. Read more

Overhaul for World Sevens Points System

Friday November 6, 2009 by  

The International Rugby Board has announced changes to the system governing the number of points available to teams at each leg of the IRB Sevens World Series.

The number of Series points on offer at the seven 16-team events (Dubai, South Africa, New Zealand, USA, Australia, England, Scotland) has been raised to offer a better balance in relation to the one 24-team tournament in Hong Kong.

The Cup winners at the 16-team season-opener in Dubai, for example, will now take 24 points towards their Series tally, as opposed to 20, while the Hong Kong Cup winners will still earn 30 points.

The points available to teams in Hong Kong have, however, also been recalcuated to better reward teams outside the Cup competition. Read more

Strong Interest to host RWC Sevens 2013

Tuesday November 3, 2009 by  

The International Rugby Board has confirmed that eight Unions have expressed a formal interest to host Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013.

Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Hong Kong, Russia, Scotland and USA all submitted their interest to tender for the global showcase tournament by the deadline on October 30.

The strong level of tender interest is another significant boost for Rugby Sevens at a time when the sport is enjoying its highest ever profile following the International Olympic Committee’s decision to include the sport in the Olympic Games, starting from 2016 in Rio de Janeiro.

“The International Rugby Board is delighted with the phenomenal level of interest in hosting Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013,” said Rugby World Cup Limited Chairman Bernard Lapasset. Read more

Rugby returns to Olympic fold

Saturday October 10, 2009 by  

Australian Rugby Union has welcomed the historic decision by the International Olympic Committee to return Rugby to the Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

The IOC members, meeting in Copenhagen, voted overwhelmingly 81 to eight in support of Rugby Sevens after the code was one of two recommended by the Executive Board for inclusion in Brazil.

Golf was also accepted into the Games with a supporting vote of 63 to 27.

“This is a wonderful moment for our game, and a momentous decision by the IOC,” said ARU Managing Director and CEO John O’Neill. Read more

Australia’s challenging start to Sevens campaign

Tuesday October 6, 2009 by  

The Australian Men’s Sevens team will have a challenging start to their IRB Sevens World Series campaign. They will meet defending Series champions South Africa in the Pool rounds at the Dubai Sevens (December 4-5), the first stop on the 2009/10 Series tour.

In these crucial pool matches, Australia will also come up against the Arabian Gulf and Wales – the current IRB Rugby World Cup Sevens champions.

The Dubai tournament will be played at “The Sevens,” Dubai’s purpose-built sporting venue, which staged last year’s event and the 2009 Rugby World Cup Sevens for both men and women in March.

Last season Australia placed eighth on the overall Series standings. However, for the 11th year of the Sevens World Series they are determined to better this result. Read more