The Asia Rugby Sevens Trophy 2017 will open the season for Asia Rugby competitions with the women’s event taking place in Vientiane, Laos from 17-18 February and the men’s event capping off our development Sevens competitions in Doha, Qatar on 3-4 March.
This year’s Trophy competitions will be particularly intense as the winner of our Sevens Trophy, for both men and women, will secure a place in our elite sevens competition – the Asia Rugby Sevens Series and the Asia Rugby Women’s Sevens Series, which will take place in Hong Kong, Korea and Sri Lanka in September and October, 2017. And with that, the opportunity to qualify for the Rugby World Cup 7’s 2018.
Our Sevens Trophy will this year feature 14 unions – Bangladesh, India, Iran, Jordan, Laos, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and UAE – which highlights the impact of our Trophy series in growing our game.
In the men’s draw, that took place today at the Movenpick Hotel Al Aziziyah Doha, top seeds Singapore were pooled with Pakistan and newcomers to the Sevens circuit, Jordan, in Pool A. Thailand, 2nd seed for the tournament will take on Iran and Bangladesh in Pool D, while Pool C, which will feature only two teams – UAE (3rd seed) and India – should provide a couple of quality matches in pool play. And in Pool B, Philippines (4th seed) will face Nepal before a difficult final pool match against the hosts Qatar.
With 11 teams participating in Doha and all vying for the top spot and a chance to continue on the path to the RWC Sevens 2018 in San Francisco, we look forward to a couple of days of magic competition in what promises to be a very competitive tournament.
And in the Asia Rugby Women’s Sevens Trophy in Laos, top seeds South Korea will be looking to continue their form from last years’ experience on the Asian Sevens circuit and quickly return to the top echelon of women’s Sevens.
With 7 teams participating in Laos – South Korea, India, Philippines, Malaysia, Laos, Nepal, Pakistan – the competition will be played over a full round robin over the 2 days in order to find our champion. For a number of unions, this tournament marks the first time that they will compete in an Asian women’s event – a testament to the development of our women’s game in the region.
Asia Rugby is thankful to both the Lao Rugby Federation (Women) and the Qatar Rugby Federation (Men) for hosting this years’ Asia Rugby Sevens Trophy.