Without Hong Kong, there could be no HSBC World Rugby Seven Series and no rugby at the Olympics, one among the game’s most excellent players have said.
Waisale Serevi, the Fijian who first graced the Hong Kong Sevens
Thirty years ago and counts World Cup triumphs among his several successes, is now the instruct of the Russia group, and does not doubt the debt the game owes the metropolis.
“Everything began from right here, that is what I consider,” he stated.
The maximum prestigious match on the Sevens circuit, Hong Kong has been attracting a number of the arena’s satisfactory because of its inception in 1976. It is now one among ten stops on what became the IRB World Sevens Series and has been sponsored using HSBC in view that 2014.
In 2009, it became usual into the Olympics, and in 2016 Fiji gained gold inside the inaugural opposition in Rio, beating Great Britain forty three-7 in the very last.
“I simply want to thank Hong Kong rugby, because without the Hong Kong Sevens I believe Sevens couldn’t be on this place,” Serevi, 50, stated.
“They are the ones who have driven it up from being the Hong Kong Sevens, then the series; then we went to the IOC to bid for rugby because it’s so thrilling, and then now it’s far in the Olympics.”
There became a time while for some, Hong Kong turned into the Olympics of rugby union, an opinion well-known tv commentator Bill McLaren remarked on in his autobiography Talking of Rugby.
“I don’t forget a large South Sea islander saying that, in his view, the Hong Kong Sevens has been the Olympic games of rugby union,” McLaren wrote. “Certainly, the Hong Kong occasion encapsulates all the clearly right matters that the game has to offer – outstanding organization, first-rate carrying spirit, regularly occurring camaraderie, admirable discipline behavior, the maximum fun crowd participation, the danger for emergent rugby nations to lock horns with the potent guys of New Zealand, Australia, Fiji, Wales, Scotland, and the Barbarians. There is, too, scintillating strolling and handling that’s what the game is supposed to be all approximately.”
If Hong Kong was the Olympics, then New Zealand and Fiji were perennial gold-medal winners and Serevi one of the stars of the show. But the times of Southern Hemisphere dominance are over, and now the likes of the US, England, South Africa, and Australia are equally risky.
As Mike Friday, America head coach, mentioned in his pre-match press convention on Wednesday: “Anybody can beat absolutely everyone on any given Sunday, you’ve visible that this season. This World Series is evolving; it’s pioneering; it’s leading from the front.”
For Serevi, that evolution started at his first event on the Hong Kong Football Club in Happy Valley and has led to recreation with expert groups and an exciting future.
“Before it became simply Fiji and New Zealand coming to the Hong Kong Sevens [who could win], now it’s approximately six groups,” Serevi stated. “Spain have simply crushed New Zealand, and it’s getting harder and tougher, now it’s all professional groups.”