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More Sevens tournaments get canned

NEWS: The popular Sydney Sevens tournament won’t be staged when the World Rugby Sevens Series returns to a full schedule next year.

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A Rugby Australia (RA) statement on Friday night confirmed that the Sydney event would be missing, along with the New Zealand leg in Hamilton, as uncertainty caused by the pandemic continues to hamper sports.

It comes as World Rugby also announced it had cancelled scheduled events in Cape Town and Singapore in this year’s series due to “ongoing challenges” brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

RA said the Sydney decision was “in line with relevant government and international public health authority advice, and with the health and wellbeing of the community in mind.”

“It is incredibly disappointing that the Sydney Sevens will not be taking place in 2022,” said Rugby Australia CEO Andy Marinos.

“We will be back in 2023 where we have no doubt the tournament will be another sporting celebration in Sydney.”

The statement said RA and New Zealand Rugby would continue to consult with World Rugby about establishing several regional Oceania Sevens tournaments with the support of the Australian government, as preparation for the men’s and women’s teams ahead of the Commonwealth Games and Rugby World Cup Sevens in 2022.

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World Rugby chief executive Alan Gilpin said: “The Olympic Games in Tokyo once again showcased the very best of rugby sevens to a huge global audience as the sport’s fast-paced, action-packed style thrilled fans watching around the globe.

“We now look ahead to the return of the World Rugby Sevens Series with upcoming events in Canada and Dubai ahead of what promises to be a very busy and exciting year for the sport in 2022 with the series followed by the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and climaxing with Rugby World Cup Sevens in Cape Town.”

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