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Rugby | Sevens

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CT Sevens continuation a 'no-brainer'

With the tournament sold out for the third consecutive year, the Cape Town Sevens looks likely to become a feature of the early December holiday entertainment offered by the Mother City for several more years.

SA Rugby chief executive Jurie Roux disclosed at a press conference he hosted jointly with the Mayor of Cape Town, Patricia de Lille, on Wednesday that the time has come for all the unions that host events in the HSBC World Sevens Series to submit the tender process in their bid to remain part of the circuit for the next three years.

However, according to Roux, it should just be a formality for Cape Town to get the nod to continue to host the tournament after two highly successful events and another in the offing a few days from now.

“This is one of the most successful tournaments and while it isn’t something that we are really supposed to publicise, there is an internal award that is awarded after every Series is completed and decided on by the players and coaches who participate at all the events,” said Roux.

“We have won that for the past three years. So I think it is a natural no-brainer that we should continue. But there again, I also said that about our bid to host the World Cup (2023),” he added with a wry smile.

Jokes aside, there is little chance of Cape Town losing out, which will mean that the city should continue profiting from the influx of people who travel for the tournament. According to De Lille, last year’s tournament boosted the local economy to the tune of R432-million and it created 1400 jobs, some of them fulltime and some part-time, while also providing a great advertising window for the city as a tourist destination.

According to Roux, the city administration has asked in the past if the tournament could be moved to another date when there might be less strain on the availability of hotel beds, but he explained that there was little chance of that happening.

“Our tournament has twinned nicely with Dubai, and there is little chance of the date of the Dubai tournament being changed to a different date, just as there is little chance of the Hong Kong tournament being switched to another time of year. So we can expect the tournament to remain in it’s current date in early December,” he said.

Roux explained that a sub-committee would assess a multi-faceted evaluation report before a recommendation was put forward for a final decision, with the announcements on future venues being made in the middle of next year.

“Basically, they go on the criteria of attendance, player evaluation, team evaluation and viewership numbers,” said Roux.

As Cape Town is tops in all of those criteria it appears Roux is right – this time there won’t be any nasty surprise like there was for the World Cup announcement last month. Cape Town ticks too many boxes for it not to be a no-brainer.


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