Rugby sevens is one of the fastest growing sports in the US and is gaining massive popularity. It is a very fast paced game played on a full sized rugby pitch and played in a tournament format. Fans and Players both like the sport because of its quick short games, it’s tournament formats which last all day and sometimes a full weekend and lastly the social formats where fans often get dressed up with face paintings and costumes supporting their national pride.
The Game Itself:
It consists of 7 on 7 players a side for 7 min halves and 1 minute half-time. In a typical tournament, each team plays round robin format with pool play games then the top teams in each bracket advancing to the semifinals and ultimately the finals to crown a tournament champion. Same rules apply in 7’s as they do in 15’s.
The International Rugby Board (IRB) manages a global seven’s series where tournaments are played throughout the world including, Australia, Dubai, Japan, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Las Vegas, Scotland and England. Countries compete in these tournaments to earn points based on how far they advance in the tournament.
USA RUGBY 7’s:
In the US there is a National Collegiate 7’s Championship in early June as well as a National Club Championships which is played in mid-August. In both Championships, teams must win qualifying tournaments in order to be participate in the National Championships. I’ve had the opportunity to participate in (4) National Club 7’s Championships which is where I’ve learned my 7’s skills, and coaching.
~Written by Jason Ayers, 7s coach for Arkansas Gryphons
Professional testimonials from former USA Eagles
On 07/09/12 2:45 PM, Brian Vizard wrote:
“Playing sevens only aided in my 15s play both offensively and defensively. A player may try to make plays in 7s that they wouldn’t (or shouldn’t) try in 15s but that’s where discipline and experience comes into play. I think the benefits of playing 7s far outweighs the negatives. I would encourage all players to play 7s no matter what position they play in 15s.”
On 07/09/12 3:01 PM, Craig Hartley wrote:
“Where do I begin; Let’s start with continuity. Players continue to play and develop their rugby skills over the summer. Not to mention, they stay in shape. Instead of having to start all over again. Skills: passing, catching, speed & agility, and most importantly…open field tackling. The greatest weapon in Defense!”
On 12/21/12 4:01 AM, Dan Payne wrote:
“Rugby is Rugby…. Passing, Tackling, Hustle, Decision Making, Fitness, Strength, Retaining the ball in contact, contact skills, etc.. They’re all the same skills whether playing 15’s or 7’s….people get too caught up in the miniscule items….we need to play as much rugby, regardless of code.”