While rugby traces its roots to the UK, the rough and tumble sport is readying for the spotlight here in British Columbia during the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. Set for March 12 – 13, Vancouver is the sixth urban centre featured during the 10-city, multi-tournament event that includes similar feats of strength in Cape Town, Sydney and Las Vegas. Backed by the roar of the crowd, 16 national sevens teams will vie for glory at BC Place Stadium; while individual tournaments award the Cup, Plate, Bowl and Shield, a cumulative tally will determine the championship squad at tournament’s end. As an added bonus, the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series will act as a primer for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, where rugby is set to make its official Olympic sport debut.
The Host (City) with the Most
There’s little wonder why Vancouver was selected as the ultimate Rugby Sevens battleground — BC’s largest metropolis has played host to numerous high-profile sporting events over the years, including the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Here, mild year-round temperatures create an ideal setting for adrenalin-thumping outdoor play; soccer fields sit next to pretty parks and sporting venues share real estate with sky-high towers. BC Place Stadium holds court as Canada’s largest multi-purpose sports venue, while numerous professional teams — including the Vancouver Canucks (National Hockey League), BC Lions (Canadian Football League) and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC (Major League Soccer) — all hoist their West Coast colours here. Add to this that Vancouver is a city suited for exploration, be it a cycle through 400-hectare (1,000-acre) Stanley Park, a kayaking excursion within the calm waters surrounding the city, a stroll through North America’s second largest Chinatown or a visit to one of its many spectacular First Nations museums.
For more about the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, visit canadasevens.com/mens.