The draw for the Asia Rugby Sevens Qualifier and the Asia Rugby Women’s Sevens Qualifier for the debut of rugby sevens at the Olympic Games was held by the Hong Kong Rugby Union in Hong Kong Thursday afternoon.
The Asia Rugby Sevens Qualifiers will be held in Hong Kong on 7-8 November to decide which nation will take the single available slot for Asia in each of the men’s and women’s competitions at next year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The Hong Kong men’s rugby sevens team was drawn in Pool B and will face Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Philippines and Iran in pool play. Should the team finish on top of their pool, they will most likely avoid playing Japan, their greatest rivals on the Asian Rugby Sevens circuit, until the final.
“We want to make sure that everybody knows that, even though it’s November, we have two days of extremely competitive Rugby Sevens coming up, and the Hong Kong teams, which both have a good chance of coming out of this with the right result, need all our support,” said Hong Kong Rugby Union Chief Executive, Mr Vern Reid.
The draw was also attended by former Hong Kong Olympian Mr Sarinder Dillon. Mr Dillon represented the city at the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games as a member of the Men’s Field Hockey team.
Rugby Sevens will debut at the 2016 Summer Games in Brazil, creating an opportunity for Hong Kong’s Men’s and Women’s Rugby Sevens teams to make history by becoming the first local teams to qualify for an Olympic Games since those heroes in 1964.