New-look World Sevens Series to kick off in Dubai

The new season will include 10 men’s and seven women’s rounds over six months, including new tournaments in Spain and France.

Picture: Twitter/@WorldRugby7s

CAPE TOWN - The 2022 World Rugby Sevens Series will kick off in Dubai in November and will build up to the Commonwealth Games in July next year, culminating in the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Cape Town in September.

The Blitzboks head into the season as the defending champions after winning the 2021 crown in Canada in September.

The new season will include 10 men’s and seven women’s rounds over six months, including new tournaments in Spain and France.

The new venues in Spain temporarily replace traditional series hosts Sydney (Australia) and Hamilton (New Zealand), who are unable to host next year due to the logistical challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic in their region.

Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell said that was a big positive for the game of Sevens to host a tournament in a new country.

“It’s a country [Spain] that’s done well on the Sevens circuit and I think a country that tries to grow the game of Rugby Sevens. So great to be there as well and to showcase Rugby Sevens.”

Powell said he was happy to see a full circuit, but was wary of the uncertain times and that things could change.

“Obviously the reality we know that they might cancel some of the tournaments as we get closer to them, but for now it’s great to see.”

One of the tournaments that is not part of the circuit again this year is the Cape Town Sevens leg that will not take place due to COVID-19 challenges. It’s the second consecutive year that it’s been cancelled.

In other news, World Rugby announced that Japan would join the men’s series as a core team following their promotion as HSBC World Rugby Sevens Challenger series champions in 2020.

Great Britain will compete in the opening two rounds of the series in Dubai – as part of the standing agreement to play the calendar year 2021 – before reverting to compete as national unions (England, Scotland and Wales) for the remainder of the 2022 world series.

Here’s the 2022 World Rugby Sevens men’s schedule:

Round 1: Dubai – 26-27 November 2021

Round 2: Dubai – 3-4 December 2021

Round 3: Malaga, Spain – 21-23 January 2022

Round 4: Seville, Spain – 28-30 January 2022

Round 5: Vancouver, Canada – 26-27 February 2022

Round 6: Los Angeles, USA – 5-6 March 2022

Round 7: Hong Kong – 1-3 April 2022

Round 8: Singapore – 9-10 April 2022

Round 9: Toulouse, France – 20-22 May 2022

Round 10: London, England – 28-29 May 2022

Download the Eyewitness News app to your iOS or Android device.