Formed 2004 ... Herts 7s U14 Runners-up 2005 ... North Herts U14 team, Herts Youth Games 2005 runners-up (coached by Letchworth)... Herts Superteams U14 Runners-up 2005 ... Herts SuperTeams "Fairplay" winners 2006 ... Rochford 10s U17 Champions 2006 ... East Midlands 10s U17 Runners-up 2007 ... East Midlands 10s U17 "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... National 10s U17 5th place and "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... Herts 7s U17 Plate runners-up 2007 ... National 7s U17 Plate winners 2007 ... RFU "President's XV" Award winners 2007 ... Herts Superteams winners 2007 ... Midlands 10s U18 Runners-up 2008 ... National 10s U18 4th place 2008 ... North Herts U11 team, Herts Youth Games 2008 runners-up (coached by Letchworth girls) ... London and SE 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2008 ... Herts 7s U18s runners-up 2008 ... National 7s U18s quarter-finalists 2008 ... Gloucester City 10s U18 Bowl runner-up (6th) 2009 ... Worthing 10s U18 Plate runner-up 2009 ... National 7s U18 Plate winners 2009... Worthing 10s U15 Plate winners 2010... Worthing 10s U18 Shield winners 2010... Herts 7s U15 and U18 Bowl runners-up 2010... National 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2010...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Women's World Sevens Series to be announced?

There are strong rumours going around that the IRB will shortly be announcing the launch of a women's World Sevens Series to parallel the highly successful men's tour.

The men's tour is currently spread over eight tournaments, played over four fortnights. So, for instance, the tour opens with Dubai and South Africa (St George's) in early December, New Zealand and USA (Las Vegas) in mid-February, Hong Kong and Australia at the end of March, and Twickenham and Murrayfield in May.

The idea seems to be that, initially, the women's tour would be made up of four events - one of the events in each of the men's fortnights would include a women's event. This would be easily achieved as, in three cases, successful women's tournaments are already fully integrated into the men's events - at Dubai in round one, Las Vegas in round two, and Hong Kong in round three. All it would need would be a change of rules to ensure that only official national teams took part (so no invitational selections), and that a host could be found for round four (either a new event - probably in London - or one of the existing continental events - most likely Amsterdam).

Its unlikely they could go beyond four events at the start for the simple, practical reason that most women players are amateur and could not afford to fly round the world for four months of the year!

Qualification to take part would be interesting. Canada, USA, Netherlands, Spain, France and Brazil already regularly fly the globe playing sevens so would be shoe-ins, but the likes of England, Australia and New Zealand would struggle to qualify on their current practically non-existent record.

However, whoever takes part, this would be another massive boost to the women's game - sharing the stage with the men's teams, finals televised worldwide, etc. Some very bankable star players could quickly emerge, sponsorship possibilities would increase massively. Exciting times ahead - for those countries ready to cease the opportunity.

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