World Rugby Sevens Series at BC Place begins tomorrow

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Image: World Rugby Sevens Series / Facebook

The World Rugby Sevens Series touches down in Vancouver tomorrow and the city is buzzing.

The two-day tournament is unlike anything we’ve ever hosted in Vancouver, and the world will be watching. It’s always special for our city to host an event with global appeal.

This will be a great introduction to a new sport for many Vancouverites and promises to be a lot of fun.

The lower bowl of BC Place is sold out, allowing organizers to sell some upper bowl seats as well. In total, nearly 60,000 people are expecting to attend over two days.

Explaining Rugby Sevens

Rugby Sevens is similar to the rugby that you’re likely familiar with, except games are shorter and faster.

This brand of rugby has seven-minute halves and seven players a side, instead of 40-minute halves with 15 players a side like we see in the sport of Rugby Union.

The Series

Vancouver is one of ten stops on the World Rugby Sevens Series.

Other stops this season include:

  • Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Cape Town, South Africa
  • Wellington, New Zealand
  • Sydney, Australia
  • Las Vegas, USA
  • Hong Kong
  • Singapore
  • Paris, France
  • London, United Kingdom

This is the 17th season of the World Rugby Sevens Series, which debuted in 1999. Canada’s best finish was 6th, which they achieved most recently in the 2013-14 season.

Standings

Rugby Sevens will make its Olympic debut in Rio this summer. The World Rugby Sevens Series also doubles as an Olympic qualifier, with the top-four ranked teams booking their tickets to Brazil.

Fiji currently leads the standings after five stops in the series. South Africa is in second place, followed by New Zealand, Australia, and USA. Canada is in 12th place.

 

rugby-sevens-standings

You’ll notice that Japan and Zimbabwe have not competed in every stop and they will not be in the Vancouver tournament. This is because unlike the other teams on the tour, they do not have ‘core team’ status.

Schedule

Day 1: Saturday, March 12

Game Pool Fixtures Minutes Kick-off
1 C South Africa v Scotland 0:22 9:30
2 C Argentina v Brazil 0:22 9:52
3 A Fiji v Samoa 0:22 10:14
4 A Kenya v Portugal 0:22 10:36
5 D United States v France 0:22 10:58
6 D New Zealand v England 0:22 11:20
7 B Australia v Russia 0:22 11:42
8 B Wales v Canada 0:22 12:04
 U-18 Provincial Girls Finals 0:22 12:26
U-18 Provincial Boys Finals 0:22 12:26
9 C South Africa v Brazil 0:22 13:06
10 C Argentina v Scotland 0:22 13:28
11 A Fiji v Portugal 0:22 13:50
12 A Kenya v Samoa 0:22 14:12
13 D United States v England 0:22 14:34
14 D New Zealand v France 0:22 14:56
15 B Wales v Russia 0:22 15:18
16 B Australia v Canada 0:22 15:40
 Women’s Elite 0:52 16:02
17 C Scotland v Brazil 0:22 16:54
18 C South Africa v Argentina 0:22 17:16
19 A Samoa v Portugal 0:22 17:38
20 A Fiji v Kenya 0:22 18:00
21 D France v England 0:22 18:22
22 D United States v New Zealand 0:22 18:44
23 B Australia v Wales 0:22 19:06
24 B Russia v Canada 0:22 19:28
END 19:50

Day 2: Sunday, March 13

25 Bowl QF 3rd Pool A v 4th Pool D 0:22 9:40
26 Bowl QF 3rd Pool C v 4th Pool B 0:22 10:02
27 Bowl QF 3rd Pool D v 4th Pool A 0:22 10:24
28 Bowl QF 3rd Pool B v 4th Pool C 0:22 10:46
29 Cup QF 1st Pool A v 2nd Pool D 0:22 11:08
30 Cup QF 1st Pool C v 2nd Pool B 0:22 11:30
31 Cup QF 1st Pool D v 2nd Pool A 0:22 11:52
32 Cup QF 1st Pool B v 2nd Pool C 0:22 12:14
Ceremony 0:20 12:36
33 Shield SF Loser Game 25 v Loser Game 26 0:22 12:56
34 Shield SF Loser Game 27 v Loser Game 28 0:22 13:18
35 Bowl SF Winner Game 25 v Winner Game 26 0:22 13:40
36 Bowl SF Winner Game 27 v Winner Game 28 0:22 14:02
37 Plate SF Loser Game 29 v Loser Game 30 0:22 14:24
38 Plate SF Loser Game 31 v Loser Game 32 0:22 14:46
39 Cup SF Winner Game 29 v Winner Game 30 0:22 15:08
40 Cup SF Winner Game 31 v Winner Game 32 0:22 15:30
Buffer 0:10 15:52
41 Shield Final Winner Game 33 v Winner Game 34 0:28 16:02
42 Bowl Final Winner Game 35 v Winner Game 36 0:28 16:30
43 Plate Final Winner Game 37 v Winner Game 38 0:28 16:58
44 Play Off Loser Game 39 v Loser Game 40 0:24 17:26
Buffer 0:10 17:50
45 Cup Final Winner Game 39 v Winner Game 40 0:28 18:00
Presentation 18:28

Teams to watch

New Zealand is the most decorated team all-time, winning 12 of 16 World Rugby Sevens Series titles, including four in a row between 2010 and 2014. Of course you should always watch New Zealand no matter what because of the Haka.

Fiji currently leads the standings and are last year’s champions. South Africa, currently second in the standings, have finished as runners up in four of the last five years.

“Fancy Dress”

Rugby Sevens fans are a unique bunch.

Don’t be surprised if you see a lot of people dressed up in costumes, or “fancy dress”, as it’s known. Fans are encouraged to show up in costumes that can be related to the country they’re supporting, or they can be completely random.

Around town

Rugby Sevens teams have been remarkably accessible and down to earth this week.

Here’s a picture of the New Zealand All Blacks visiting Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School in East Vancouver earlier in the week.

new-zealand-rugby

BC Place

Because this is a bit of a unique event with 10 hours of action with 16 teams over two consecutive days, BC Place is making some special arrangements.

Fans will have in-and-out privileges, up until 1:00 pm. Seating is also general admission, meaning you can sit wherever you like despite the fact that everyone’s tickets have a section/row/seat on them.

For more information, check out the FAQ section on the Canada Sevens website.

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Rob Williams Sports Editor at Vancity Buzz covering all sports in Vancouver.
@robthehockeyguy

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