International Rugby Board Chairman Bernard Lapasset has hailed a record-breaking Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games Rugby Sevens event as the perfect Olympic Games springboard.
A Rugby Sevens world record crowd of more than 170,000 fans over four sessions were treated to thrills, spills and spectacular tries as the sport’s brand of high-octane action and carnival atmosphere demonstrated why it is one of the hottest Games tickets.
With two years to go until Rugby Sevens makes its Olympic Games debut, fans in the stadium and watching around the world were given an exciting taste of what to expect at Rio 2016.
Lapasset said: “Glasgow 2014 has been the ideal stage to showcase our sport and the perfect springboard to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.”
“Once again, Rugby Sevens has proven to be one of the events to see at the Commonwealth Games with its winning blend of skill, speed and tries and carnival atmosphere attracting a world record attendance for a Sevens event.”
“Rugby Sevens is thriving and continues to reach out and inspire new audiences. Glasgow 2014 has furthered the Sevens success story, taking Rugby Sevens to new fans around the world and I would like to congratulate the teams, the organisers, volunteers and people of Glasgow for delivering an exceptional event.”
In Rio, men’s and women’s Rugby Sevens will be played at the Deodoro Olympic Park alongside 10 other sports and the IRB is determined to ensure that its Olympic debut is a success on and off the field, delivering new audiences to the Olympics and Rugby.
Lapasset continued: “All the indications are that good progress is now being made at the Deodoro Olympic Park and we are working closely with the Rio 2016 Organising Committee and the IOC to deliver spectacular and successful men’s and women’s Rugby Sevens events.”
“We do not get a second chance to make a first impression and we are all focused on ensuring that our debut is great for Rugby, but also great for the Games. The Commonwealth Games has yet again underscored Rugby Sevens’ ability to deliver a vibrant, youthful crowd and great sport.”
Commonwealth Games Rugby Sevens: Roll of honour
1998, Kuala Lumpur – New Zealand
2002, Manchester – New Zealand
2006, Melbourne – New Zealand
2010, Delhi – New Zealand
2014, Glasgow – South Africa