Sunday, January 19, 2014

Chile wants to host a leg of the IRB Sevens World Series

During the opening day of the 2014 Seven Viña tournament in Chile the President of the Chilean Rugby  Federation (Feruchi), Pablo Demaria announced that Chile is a candidate to be allocated a leg of the IRB Sevens World Series in 2015 or 2016. 

The governing body of global rugby, the IRB is looking to expand the HSBC Sevens World Series to include additional rounds. At present the event involved nine legs spread over an eight month period. It begins in October and concludes in May but there are notable periods in which no Rugby Sevens is played. 

A six week gap between the first and second tournaments in Australia and Dubai is followed by a similar interval between the third and fourth legs in South Africa and the USA and again between the fifth event in New Zealand and the sixth in Japan. The Hong Kong Sevens takes place the week after the event in Tokyo but between Hong Kong and Scotland there is a five week break which sees no tournament take place in the month of April.

The IRB is looking to fill in some of these gaps and wants the 2014-2015 IRB World Sevens Series to involve ten legs of competition. La Plata was to host starting in 2012 but opted to begin doing so at a later date due to the UAR being focused on ensuring the transition into the Rugby Championship and Super Rugby would be the focus points. 

The UAR previously stated that it would be interested in hosting a leg of the IRB World Sevens Series after entrance into Super Rugby. Argentina´s participation will be confirmed on February 20 with the South American nation competing in the professional competition for the first time in 2016. The UAR will then begin officially contracting players back from European clubs and will have the Rugby World Cup 2015 squad members under union control. 

The Feruchi is therefore looking to bring a global event to its shores and it has reason to feel confident due to it being backed by the Chilean Olympic Committee as well as CONSUR. Chile has experience in hosting IRB Events. Indeed ni 2013 it became the first country to host the IRB Junior World Trophy on two occassions. The decision now rests with the IRB and with Rio de Janeiro hosting the Olympic Games in two years time it has been stated by officials that there is an interest in the South American market. 

With Argentina´s home leg presently on hold South America does not host a tournament and Chile is interested in filling the void. It is presently hosting the two day Viña Seven tournament in the city of Viña del Mar. The tournament is an official CONSUR Sevens event in which two CONSUR members will qualify for the 2014 Hong Kong Sevens. 

The two qualifying sides will be confirmed on Sunday evening local time. Argentina need not qualify due to the country being a core member which plays in every leg of the IRB World Sevens Series. As such Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay each have the opportunity to qualify later on today. The opening day of the Viña Seven 

Chile is likely to qualify for Hong Kong after it defeated the Argentine team competing in Viña del Mar, Pampas 7s. While the Pampas side is not the genuine Argentine Sevens team it was, nonetheless, representing Argentina and listed as such. The top two other than Argentina will qualify directly for Hong Kong. Brazil, Chile and Uruguay remain in contention. Colombia and Venezuela pulled out of the tournament which had an impact on the schedule.

Day One Activity
Group A: Argentina, Chile, Peru
Group B: Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay

4:00pm Argentina 38-0 Peru
4:20pm Uruguay 5-0 Paraguay
6:30pm Chile 45-0 Peru
6:50pm Brazil 7-5 Paraguay
8:30pm Uruguay 15-5 Brazil 
8:50pm Argentina 7-21 Chile

Day Two Schedule
3:25pm Chile v Brazil 
3:45pm Uruguay v Argentina
5:40pm Chile v Uruguay
6:00pm Argentina v Brazil
7:15pm Peru v Paraguay (5th place final)
8:15pm Uruguay v Brazil 
8:35pm Chile v Argentina 

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