Thursday, January 17, 2013

Draw made for South American Sevens

Like in 2012 the South American Sevens tournament will be played in Rio de Janeiro. CONSUR is getting behind the CBRu as Brazil prepares to host the first ever Olympic Games featuring Rugby Sevens in 2016. Also like in 2012 the event will involve ten teams with CONSUR having a Central American nation participate. Despite being in North America, Guatemala will compete in the CONSUR Sevens. As shown in the above map the South and North American continents are not used to categorize rugby teams into NACRA and CONSUR. Rather the teams making up CONSUR are the Latin speaking nations while the NACRA nations are Anglo speaking. As such Guyana competes in NACRA while Costa Rica, Guatemala and others compete in CONSUR. While it may not make sense territorially from a cultural perspective it does as Argentina has been involved in assisting the growth of rugby throughout Spanish America. Canada and the USA, similarly, have more in common with Guyana than do the South American rugby nations.  

While Guatemala will participate Costa Rica and El Salvador will not despite efforts from CONSUR. The idea was for the 2013 edition to feature twelve teams. The ten competing are Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. the teams have been divided into groups according to their seeding. Argentina as the highest ranked team heads one group and the second ranked Uruguay heads another. Chile is third, Paraguay fourth, Brazil fifth, Peru sixth, Colombia seventh, Venezuela eighth, Guatemala ninth and Ecuador tenth. The participation of not only Guatemala but also Ecuador is very encouraging as neither country is an IRB Member.

The 2012 CONSUR Sevens event will be played over two days on February 23 and 24 with the ten nations  divided into two groups of five. The top two countries in each group will advance to dispute the Cup Final while all the participants will play a total of seven matches in the two day tournament. There is a lot to play for besides winning the tournament. The quadrangular final will determine who qualifies for the 2013 Rugby Sevens World Cup in Moscow as well as who represents CONSUR at the 2013 Hong Kong Sevens. As such Uruguay, as likely group winners of Group A should face either Brazil or Paraguay and then Argentina in the quadrangular. Chile should advance as runner-up from Group B. Of these teams the best, besides Argentina, will compete be World Cup bound. 

Group A: Uruguay, Paraguay, Brazil, Venezuela and Ecuador

Group B: Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia and Guatemala

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