Following consultation and constructive dialogue with the host organizations, it has been confirmed that the combined men’s and women’s Hamilton and Sydney rounds of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2021, which were provisionally scheduled for 23-24 and 30-31 January 2021 respectively, will not take place due to the ongoing and dynamic global nature of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The decisions were taken in line with relevant government and international public health authority advice and with the health and wellbeing of the rugby community and the wider public as top priority. Both hosts are due to return to a full Series schedule beyond 2021.
Both Dubai and Cape Town 7s have since been cancelled meaning teams will have just six legs -Vancouver, LA, Hong Kong, Singapore, London and Paris- to prepare for the Olympics.
World Rugby continues to work in collaboration with all host and participating unions, International Rugby Players, partners and stakeholders to closely monitor global developments with the COVID-19 pandemic while continuing to work towards a return to HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series action, with planning ongoing towards holding events in Hong Kong and Singapore in April 2021. A further update on HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series schedule will be given in due course.
Meanwhile, World Rugby, in full partnership with host unions, regional associations, participating unions and International Rugby Players, continues to evaluate and develop supplementary competition opportunities at a regional or cross-regional level in addition to the Series to ensure that Olympic qualified teams have an appropriate amount of high-level competition opportunities, which will enable them to compete to the best of their abilities at the Games, despite the significant disruption caused across the sporting spectrum by the pandemic.
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.
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.