Dublin, Ireland, September 4, 2020: World Rugby has announced details of a rugby sevens investment strategy to optimise the sport’s preparation for and participation at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, now scheduled for July 2021.
In a significant boost to unions and players, the international federation is making a dedicated initial investment of US$2.5 million to support Olympic qualified national unions prepare for sevens’ biggest single global event, the Olympic Games.
With all sports impacted by the global COVID-19 pandemic and the Olympic Games postponed by 12 months, the commitment is being made with the welcome support of an advancement of International Olympic Committee payments to International Federations and National Olympic Committees.
Each union that has qualified a team for the Tokyo 2020 Games will be able to apply to World Rugby for funding which can be directed towards rugby sevens squad training camps, competition support, technical and sports science and medical programmes.
The news of the funding boost comes as collaborative contingency planning for the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2021 continues to progress with ongoing reviews into the delivery of the remaining 2021 men’s and women’s Series events and preparations towards a safe, secure and impactful return to action in line with World Rugby’s COVID-19 return to play protocols.
World Rugby is planning to return to HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series action with events in Hong Kong and Singapore in April 2021.
Planning for the Olympic Repechage final qualification event in the first half of 2021 is ongoing. With 21 of the 24 teams already qualified for the Olympic rugby sevens competition in Tokyo, the remaining two women's and one men’s spots will be determined at the final qualification event.
Korea won the Asian men’s qualification event for Tokyo 2020 and China won the women’s event.