Firmly established as one of the most spectacular, exotic, well organized rugby events of its kind in the World, the Cathay Pacific Airways & HSBC 2014 Hong Kong Sevens steam rolls into Hong Kong from Friday, 28th to Sunday 30th March at the magnificent Hong Kong Stadium.
This year’s event will be the 39th edition of the tournament and anticipated to be the biggest and the best so far. 28 teams are taking apart, fielding some of the world's greatest rugby players, and a total of 120,000 spectators from every corner of the globe are expected
during this three day festival.
Origins of the HK 7’s
The Hong Kong Sevens was originally the idea of the Marketing and Promotions Manager of Rothman's Export for a Pan Asia 15s Rugby Tournament. Rodney Bentham-Wood wanted Rothmans to sponsor a pan Asia rugby Tournament. However, after a discussion between him and the chairman of the HKRFU, South African entrepreneur, A.D.C. "Tokkie" Smith, it was decided that a Sevens Tournament would be cheaper and simpler to set up. The idea was then implemented by Duncan McTavish (HKRFC then captain), Trevor J. Bedford OBE (Chairman of Hong Kong Land, Jardine Matheson Limited, Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Director of HSBC) and Ian Gow, the Rothmans' Tobacco company executive for Hong Kong. After an initial proposal was refused by the Rugby Football Union in England, the HKRFU changed its focus and sent out invitations to Asian and Pacific sides.
On 28 March 1976, clubs from Indonesia, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Tonga, Japan, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Fiji participated in the first Hong Kong Sevens Tournament at the Hong Kong Football Club in Happy Valley sponsored by Rothmans' Tobacco and Cathay Pacific. This was an important step as this was one of the first rugby tournaments that attracted commercial sponsorship. The series then grew into a competition with national representative sevens sides competing, and with this growth, the tournament moved to the Hong Kong Stadium in 1982.
What’s it all about?
For the uninitiated, Sevens is a cut-down, speeded up version of traditional rugby. Far quicker, higher scoring and fewer rules make for a much faster-paced, exciting game. Sevens’ great appeal lies in the opportunities to watch top players showcase their running and handling skills with no distractions.
According to one prominent member of the rugby fraternity, the Hong Kong sevens were really the Olympic games of Rugby Union! Certainly, the Hong Kong event encapsulates all the really good things that the game has to offer–splendid organisation, wonderful sporting spirit, universal camaraderie, admirable field behaviour, the most enjoyable crowd participation and the chance for emergent rugby nations to lock horns with the mighty men of Fiji, New Zealand, Samoa, England and Wales.
On the field, the teams will be battling it out for victory in four, thrill-a-minute competitions for the Cup, Plate, Bowl and Shield. In the stands, it will be one huge, non-stop party as the rugby fraternity sing, dance and toast this utterly unique game.
New Zealand and South Africa are currently battling for first place in the HSBC Sevens World Series (SWS) with just 2 points separating them. Fiji, England and Australia make up the top 5 although they are all at least 20 points adrift of the top runners.
Off the Pitch…
Fast and furious rugby action is guaranteed and the action at the Hong Kong stadium is merely the epicentre of what morphs into a 3 day carnival infecting the whole city. The HK 7’s event continues to be a huge awareness campaign for sports and tourism, as the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union gets to drum up support for local grass roots rugby development. The event brought in $$$ millions from the 30,000 plus overseas spectators alone last year. That’s without counting the locals' spending, so all this makes Hong Kong business owners true fans of the event too!
Construction Job Opportunities in Hong Kong
If you are looking to pick up a construction job in Hong Kong during your 7's visit, please send us an updated CV via the website or direct to firstname.lastname@example.org in good time & confirm your arrival and departure dates into and out of Hong Kong. We'd be happy to meet you for a chat and a beer and may be able to get you connected to the right people either formally or informally during your visit.
Hope to see you there!
Hong Kong & Asia Region