Hot Rugby 7s Update

Get a little inside help before the big day
Wednesday , 21 November 2007

With the Rugby 7s approaching faster than Britney to a red light, there might be a few of you out there wondering what all the fuss is about.

Sevens is an abbreviated game, derived from its 15 man big brother and consisting of (shock) seven players and each game reduced to just two seven minute halves. The teams will consist of three forwards and four backs, with the slightly quicker and more powerful players proving to be the most effective.

The pitch is the same size and the rules don't change, apart from conversions being taken as a drop kick rather than a place kick.

With there being so much space, its the quicker guys (wingers, centres and fullbacks) that prove most deadly, with each side usually having at least one real game breaker who can run them in from big distances. Up front, the three forwards will generally be the more powerful, larger guys. There will also be a few guys (usually scrum or fly halves) who will be asked to provide the creative spark to capitalise on the destructive work done by the forwards and put the speedy men in to space.

Always essential for every player in every successful sevens team is the ability to handle the ball well and to have a very high level of fitness. With the amount of space on the pitch, players will generally have the ball for much longer periods of time and be asked to make many more runs of a longer distance than they would usually encounter in the 15 a side version.

All in all it makes for a very exciting spectacle whether you're necking a beer in the stands under the Dubai sun or watching from an armchair in England to the sound of rain hitting your patio outside.

So, there you go. Hopefully that's cleared up some confusion? If you've still got any niggling questions, no doubt there are a thousand people in town willing to help your rugby-starved brain divulge such important information, with a step by step diagram and a few chirades-style action poses, probably. We just love this time of year!

For 48 hours, six pitches host tens of teams – that’s a lot of rugby! Kick off the global rugby sevens season in style at one of the UAE’s pre-eminent events. The tournament is immensely popular attracting an average 120,000 fans each year. Forgetting the rugby for a moment, the tournament’s new facilities are second to none, so why not watch your favourite team in the comfort of a luxurious hospitality suite? The 2010 tournament runs from the 2-4 December.

INFO: To Find out more and book tickets go to

Olly Barkley an English rugby union footballer provided the tips.