World Rugby has announced details of a rugby sevens investment strategy to optimise the sport’s preparation for, and participation at, next year’s Olympic Games.
As a direct result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the 2019-20 World Rugby Sevens Series as well as the four opening tournaments of the 2020-2021 campaign have been called off. Furthermore, the 2020 Olympic Games was pushed back by a full year and will now commence in July 2021.
The cancellation and postponement of these events have placed financial strain on sevens teams and players around the world. But on Tuesday, World Rugby announced it will provide financial assistance to unions who have qualified for the Olympics to help them prepare.
‘In a significant boost to unions and players, the international federation is making a dedicated initial investment of US$2.5 million to support Olympic-qualified national unions prepare for sevens’ biggest single global event, the Olympic Games,’ World Rugby said in a statement.
‘Each union that has qualified a team for the Tokyo 2020 Games will be able to apply to World Rugby for funding which can be directed towards rugby sevens squad-training camps, competition support, technical and sports science and medical programmes.
‘The news of the funding boost comes as collaborative contingency planning for the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2021 and further supplementary competition opportunities continues to progress.’
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