This weekend, two American football teams will be meeting in the San Francisco Bay Area to play a big game, otherwise known as The Super Bowl. As usual, more people will be in Las Vegas for the event then will be in the host city. A little over 300,000 are expected to be here to cheer on the best TV commercials ever to air while betting a few million dollars on that “big game”.
For those who are here from across the pond and other nations, Super Bowl Sunday means it’s one month away from a more energized, faster-paced form of football known as USA Sevens International Rugby Tournament. This three-day event is held March 4-6, 2016 at Sam Boyd Stadium. The tournament has more than doubled in its attendance since it debuted in Las Vegas in 2010. This year, the festivities have expanded to also include a week full of rugby events that start on Monday, Feb. 29, 2016.
Time Out For What??
The Vegas Tourist has covered this event twice in the last 5 years and we plan to make it back out to cover it again this year. It’s kind of an addicting sport because it is so fast-paced and seems to be always moving. The players wear minimal protection, tackle hard and fast and they don’t stop for 20 minutes because some player had a hangnail! Nope, they play on, up and over!
For those of you worried about head concussions and all that, they have strict rules about where they can hit and what happens when you violate the rules. I have included a link below to the Rugby 101 rules of the game. From an American standpoint, they are kind of funny with words and definitions.
This style of rugby is faster paced than traditional matches. Two seven-player teams compete in 14-minute matches. Shorter matches mean more games per day as well. Sixteen of the top international rugby sevens teams play 45 matches as they attempt to gain points in the HSBC Sevens World Series standings during the tournament.
Matches have seven-minute halves with two-minute intervals for pool and knock-out matches. There is no real-time for a pee break, hold it until your team wins or loses, it’s only seven minutes to half time or another match. And when they say seven-minute halves, its seven minutes. I mean they don’t stop for much of anything! The fast pace and short duration of matches make every moment of the action thrilling for the fans. The teams competing in the 2016 USA Sevens International Rugby Tournament tentatively include Argentina, Australia, Canada, England, Fiji, France, Kenya, New Zealand, Portugal, Samoa, Scotland, United States, Russia, South Africa, and Wales.
The fun thing I find about the matches is the teams interact with the fans. They come from all over the world and can sometimes make the NFL rabid fans you see on television look like pussy cats compared to these team fans! The teams competing in the 2016 USA Sevens International Rugby Tournament tentatively include Argentina, Australia, Canada, England, Fiji, France, Kenya, New Zealand, Portugal, Samoa, Scotland, United States, Russia, South Africa, and Wales.
- Need More Info? USA Sevens
- Rugby 101 | A quick guide to understanding the rules of rugby sevens
- Want to buy tickets to the weekend matches?
Hope to See You There!!