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Pools confirmed for opening round of HSBC Sevens Challenger 2024

The pools have been announced for the opening round of the World Rugby HSBC Sevens Challenger 2024 in Dubai on 12-14 January

The pools have been confirmed ahead of the opening round of the World Rugby HSBC Sevens Challenger 2024 at The Sevens Stadium in Dubai on 12-14 January.

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The Dubai pool draw follows the recent announcement of the competition schedule which sees three rounds taking place over three continents between January and May.

The Challenger competition provides a clear promotion pathway to reach the pinnacle HSBC SVNS in 2025, with the top four placed men’s and women’s teams from the 2024 Challenger, based on cumulative series points at the conclusion of the third round, securing their opportunity to compete in the new high stakes relegation play-off competition at the SVNS Grand Final in Madrid on 31 May – 2 June, 2024 against the teams ranked ninth to 12 th from HSBC SVNS 2024.

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Four successful nations from this Grand Final play-off will secure their place in HSBC SVNS 2025, while the other four teams will compete in their regional qualification tournaments to earn the right to compete in the World Rugby HSBC Sevens Challenger 2025.

The pool draw, which took place during the HSBC SVNS 2024 opening round in Dubai last weekend, produced some exciting match-ups.

Three teams in the men’s competition – Uruguay, Japan and Kenya – have already booked their places at the Olympic Games Paris 2024 and they headline pools A, B and C respectively. All teams qualified for the Challenger 2024 through regional competitions.

Men’s pools:

Pool A: Uruguay, Hong Kong China, Papua New Guinea, Georgia
Pool B: Japan, Tonga, Chile, Portugal
Pool C: Kenya, Germany, Uganda, Mexico

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World Rugby Challenger series

Women’s pools:

Pool A: Belgium, Thailand, Papua New Guinea, Uganda
Pool B: China, Czechia, Mexico, Kenya
Pool C: Poland, Hong Kong, Paraguay, Argentina

World Rugby Challenger series Women

The Challenger tournaments replicate the Olympic Games competition format, with the 12 teams drawn into three pools of four teams each. The top two from each pool as well as the two best third-placed finishers will qualify for the knockout stages with quarter-finals and semi-finals leading to the third place and gold medal matches.

The Sevens Challenger was introduced in February 2020 to boost the development of rugby sevens across the globe and provide a clear promotion pathway to reach the top level of global rugby sevens for the short format of the game which has experienced huge growth over the past two decades since the introduction of the global sevens series and becoming an Olympic sport at the Rio 2016 Games.

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The 2024 edition of the Challenger competition kicks off with combined events at the Sevens Stadium in Dubai on 12-14 January, followed by Estadio Charrúa in Montevideo, Uruguay on 8-10 March before standalone women’s and men’s events at Henryk Reyman’s Municipal Stadium in Krakow, Poland and Dantestadion in Munich, Germany respectively on 18-19 May.

HSBC World Rugby Sevens Challenger 2024 dates:

Dubai, UAE – 12-14 January (men and women)
Montevideo, Uruguay – 8-10 March, 2024 (men and women)
Krakow, Poland – 18-19 May, 2024 (women)
Munich, Germany –18-19 May, 2024 (men)

Speaking from Dubai, World Rugby Chief Competitions and Performance Officer Nigel Cass said: “The pool draw for the opening round of the World Rugby HSBC Sevens Challenger 2024 is an exciting moment allowing the teams and fans to look forward to the competition in earnest as we approach the tournament kick-off in just over a month.

“As we saw with the HSBC SVNS event last weekend, The Sevens Stadium in Dubai provides an excellent venue with a huge history of world class rugby sevens and we look forward to working together with the hosts to deliver another memorable sevens event.

“The Challenger is a vitally important tournament that provides meaningful competition and a clear promotion pathway to reach the pinnacle HSBC SVNS and there has never been a more exciting time for sevens with the revamped HSBC SVNS and the road to the Olympic Games Paris 2024.”

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Red and White Dynamight 2 hours ago
Duhan van der Merwe hat-trick sinks sloppy England to win Calcutta Cup

Up the Jocks ! a great team effort and 4 victories v on the bounce v their greatest rivals for those north of Hadrians. But, of course, before the celebrations survive the first pint of McEwans, it seems for some this Calcutta Cup match was merely 1 man v 15. What exactly is it about Sth Africans that make them such insufferable bores ? you rarely see Kiwis claiming Ireland victories (incl 3 x NZers) or Aussies for that matter (X1). You never see Samoans claiming France/England victories (Tuilagis). Or Fijians claim All Black victories. Scotland have had some great Kiwi-born players (S.Lineen/B.Laney/J.Leslie) - no surprise given their heritage - but they supported them as their ‘2nd team’. If anything they applaud their countrymen for taking opportunities and bettering themselves as professionals and, hopefully, competing on the World stage too. It takes some stratospheric level of stupid to ignore the opaque boundaries and qualifications that now allow Japan to be competitive, Portugal to win a RWC game, Argentinians to play for Italy, New Zealanders to dominate Tongan and Samoan teams - and not celebrate that World Rugby is more competitive and better for it. Everywhere on social media, even when the post has zero to do with Sth Africans (schoolboy rugby being the most obvious barrel-scraping eg - these are KIDS), they pile in and try to claim the “we are better/stronger/faster” with such voluminous levels of obnoxious bile, that it poisons the mere celebration of the sport itself. These are not ‘rugby fans’ that can marvel at the Game they Play in Heaven, but rather some misplaced insecure-fuelled poison that they need to extract from deep inside their psyche. Its hard to understand the exact reason for the massive chip on their shoulders and their desperation for the victimhood/noone-loves-us-we-dont-care, but it seems accelerated with their LOTTO Cup 1-pt wins, like gasoline on the fire. Obsessed with ‘cheating’ refs and ‘cheating’ opposition (Rassies video bloopers during Lions tour; McCaw’s whole career) and celebrating their own thuggery (#JUSTICE4 the dirtiest player in pro-rugby history), when luck suddenly goes their way (1995 Final vs an acutely comprimised ABs; Kilosi<->Cane cards in 2023 Final) or their players escape adequate penalty (Etzebeth 1-handed non-intercepts; Kolbe illegal chargedown; Etzebeth cynically retreating in the AB backline) so obviously that its clearly been coached, then suddenly its AOK as long its SA that benefit directly from it. The schizophrenic nature of Sth Africans presents them as good company in person - and lets face it, theyre EVERYWHERE now and cant get out of their own country fast enough - but as anonymous keyboard ninjas their true nature shines out as one beset with a dark undercurrent of toxic self-absorption. It appears that the bravado appears only under the protection of anonymity, a cowardice of insufferable reverse-flagellation to make themselves feel proud when the mirror stares back at them. Give yourselves a long slow clap. Well done to the entire Scotland team including all those born south of Hadrians Wall. Playing a fantastic fast pace of fluid ball-in-hands rugby that seems almost foreign to other teams. Och aye the noo.

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