In a massive boost to Russian rugby, Russia have been awarded the right to host the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens tournament. The tournament will be held in Moscow, and will cover both the men’s and women’s sevens tournament.
The tournament will give the Russian rugby federation the chance to boost it’s finances but, more importantly, the arrival of tens of thousands of rugby fans in Moscow will hopefully boost interest in the game itself among the Russian public. RRF Vice President Howard Thomas (great Russian name!) said:
“In order to help rugby grow in stature and make progress in Russia one needs to convince first the Government and then the public. We have the Government support and the second step will be to expand the concept to the public.
We felt that Sevens was ideally suited to help us attract the public and generate interest. It is much simpler than 15-a-side rugby, easy to educate, easier to explain and has been accepted into the Olympics, which is immensely significant in countries like Russia.”
By the way – if you’re interested in watching the Russian rugby sevens team in action, they’re playing in the London Sevens this weekend, and in the Edinburgh Sevens tournament a week later.