Thursday, January 27, 2011

TV dictates USA Sevens: Sport: Rugby: Sevens

Start to tune into Rugby Sevens now -- because the NFL season next year is NOT going to happen without a labor agreement. Rugby -- as the nation turns its lonely eyes to you.

The pools and match schedule have been announced for the 2011 USA Sevens, the fourth event in this year’s HSBC Sevens World Series, to be played in Las Vegas on February 12-13.

As current World Series leaders, England head Pool A as top seeds. All four Cup quarter-finals will be played at the end of day one, February 12, allowing the Cup final to be broadcast live throughout the US on February 13.

USA Sevens Tournament Director Dan Lyle added: “Four years ago, USA Sevens set out to attain mainstream legitimacy and exposure in the context of American sport, and this exciting new partnership with NBC reflects the hard work achieved to realise this opportunity.

“Working with our event partners NBC Sports, the IRB, USA Rugby and some fantastic new sponsors, we look forward to presenting the 2011 tournament to the largest US audience ever to have watched our great sport.”

In addition to the four Cup quarter final ties being played at the end of a lengthened day one, the four trophy finals are also rearranged at the end of day two. In order for the Cup final to coincide with prime time across the east coast of America, the showpiece match will be played before the three other finals at 14:15 local time.

Top seeds England won the first event of the season in Dubai. On day one in Las Vegas they face Argentina, France and Caribbean qualifiers Guyana in Pool A.

Eight-time World Series winners New Zealand won the second event in George line up as second seeds in Pool B with opening matches against Wales, Kenya and South American qualifiers, Uruguay.

Samoa and Fiji currently lie in third and fourth position respectively in the World Series standings. Fiji face Australia, Scotland and Canada in Pool C, while defending USA Sevens champions Samoa face a mouth-watering tie against hosts US as well as South Africa and Japan in Pool D.

After the first two events in Dubai and South Africa, England lead the HSBC Sevens World Series with 44 points. New Zealand are second (40), Samoa third (36), Fiji fourth (32) and South Africa fifth (24).

The third leg of the World Series will be played in Wellington, New Zealand on February 4-5, after which the teams will travel on to Las Vegas for the USA Sevens.

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