Watch All the Action in Incheon in Real Time Starting Saturday 12th November
Rapidly following on from the fast-paced action-packed showcase of rugby sevens that was the 2022 Thailand 7s, the second of the three-leg Asia Rugby Sevens Series, the Korea 7s is ready to rock and rolls on this weekend at the Namdong Asiad Rugby Stadium in Incheon, kicking off on the 12th and concluding on the 13th of November.
By Sunday evening we will be two-thirds of the way to answering the grand overwhelming question: which Women’s and Men’s 7s teams are Asia’s best?
In the Men’s race for this honorific, Hong Kong will take the field on Saturday in pole position and appear to be clear favourites having bolted out of the gate to put on a clinical, undefeated performance at the Thailand 7s; storming away with gold, and the Cup to boot, in Thailand with an impressive 36 – 19 victory over Japan in the final.
Traditional Asian rugby powerhouse Japan, however, along with the significantly improved UAE and rapidly rising South Korea and China teams, along with the talented and up and coming Philippines and Malaysia squads, appear capable of and bent on turning things around or even on their head in Incheon over the weekend, keeping the ARSS 2022 Men’s tournament from turning into a one-horse race.
The unpredictable, hotly-contested and thrilling Women’s competition in the first leg — which saw China lifting the Cup after emerging victorious over Japan in a nail-biting final decided in the dying seconds — in Thailand, has already provided clear indications that this is absolutely not a one-horse affair.
Japan Women had similarly edged out a strong Hong Kong team in their semi-final by one converted try (14 – 7 the final score); Thailand may have been overwhelmed by China in their semi-final, but went on to defeat Hong Kong in the third-place play-off. These two, along with speedy, furious and fast-improving Kazakhstan, Malaysia and Philippines Women’s teams appear capable of pulling off serious upsets and keeping the race-to-Asia’s-best interesting.
Meanwhile, 9th November brought great news for ARSS 2022 and Sri Lankan rugby players and their die-hard supporters, in the beautiful island nation and across Asia and the world.
Rugby has a richer history and is more deeply entrenched in Sri Lanka, from the grassroots and school-level up, than in most Asian nations, and the country’s Men’s 7s team has been participating against world-class opponents in the prestigious Hong Kong Sevens for decades.
For unfortunate, non-rugby reasons, Sri Lanka Rugby, the governing body of rugby in the country, is currently suspended by Asia Rugby. Both, the world and regional rugby governing bodies have, however, reiterated a firm commitment to backing the development of the nation’s players and teams. In this spirit, and following a special request from the President of the National Olympic Committee Sri Lanka, Suresh Subramaniam, to Asia Rugby President Qais Al Dhalai: the Executive Committee of Asia Rugby agreed to green-light the Sri Lankan Women’s and Men’s teams’ participation in the final two legs of ARSS 2022 under the Sri Lanka National Olympic Committee flag.
Rugby enthusiasts, fanatics and aficionados need not miss a single fleeting moment of the Korea 7s, nor the ARSS 2022 in its entirety – the third and final leg of the Series will be contested in UAE on the 26th and 27th of November – as Asia Rugby will be live-streaming all the action on its Facebook page and YouTube channel, and also regularly dropping highlights on its Instagram page. Click on any of the links below this weekend to beam up to Incheon, and beyond: