What is Rugby 7's?
Rugby sevens, also known as seven-a-side or VIIs, is a variant of rugby union in which teams are made up of seven players, instead of the usual 15, with shorter matches. Rugby sevens is administered by the International Rugby Board (IRB), the body responsible for rugby union worldwide. The game originated in Melrose, Scotland, where the Melrose Sevens tournament is still played annually. The game is popular at all levels, with amateur and club tournaments generally held in the summer months. Sevens is one of the most well distributed forms of rugby, and is popular in parts of Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas, and especially in the South Pacific.
Notable international competitions include the IRB Sevens World Series and the Rugby World Cup Sevens. Rugby sevens is also played at some multi-sport events such as the Commonwealth Games. Rugby sevens is now recognized as an Olympic sport and made its debut in the 2016 Summer Olympics.
The game of Sevens is played in festival-like, knock-out type, fun-filled competitions rather than home and away fixtures like normal rugby. Many Sevens competitions are held locally and Internationally the best known probably being the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens. It's a very fast game played at top speed with wide open spaces. Although with a reduced number of players the game is still played on a full size rugby pitch. There tends to be a light-hearted atmosphere less pressure and more room to move. So it's not always the fancied teams that win.
Teams with players prepared to throw the ball about, keep the ball alive, take a few risks (only calculated ones, of course) and use plenty of rugby sidesteps provide outstanding entertainment and often surprise everybody.
In "cut down" rugby numbers are reduced, skills are more important. You need the good skills and knowledge ... your good passing, dummies, change of pace and evasion skills are great for the less crowded game.
7s Rugby Rules Variations
You can find the normal rules on our Home page by clicking on the "Rugby 101" button. For sevens there are a small number of variations.
Number of players and substitution. Not surprisingly this variation specifies a maximum of 7 players on the rugby playing field at any time.
Time (game time, half time, extra time). Play is only seven minutes each half or ten minutes for a competition final.
Match Officials. Minor extra duties for the match official and the addition of in-goal judges one at each end of the field.