8 men’s teams and 8 women’s teams to compete to be crowned champions of Asia
Two Men’s teams and two women’s teams will directly qualify for Rugby World Cup Sevens in September 2022 in South Africa – Cape Town.
Dubai Sports Council pledge support to the tournament and future Asia Rugby Events.
Asia Rugby Chair of Competitions Committee has full faith in Dubai to deliver a top-level tournament.
The official draw for Asia qualifiers was announced at a press conference organized by Asia Rugby in association with Dubai Sports Council and the UAE Rugby Federation on Tuesday, 26th October 2021.
The qualifying tournament scheduled to be played at Dubai Sports City on the 19th and 20th November 2021 will see a total of eight teams each in men’s and women’s categories.
Champions of the recently concluded West Asia Rugby 7s, hosts UAE have been drawn alongside seven-time Asia Rugby Seven Series winners Japan together with Sri Lanka and China in Pool B of the men’s qualifiers.
Pool A boasts of Asian powerhouses South Korea, Hong Kong, Philippines and Malaysia.
In the women’s qualifiers, Pool A will comprise of Japan, Kazakhstan, Thailand and the Philippines while Pool B features China, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka and Malaysia.
Each team will play a total of three matches in the round-robin format before entering the knock-out stage. The top two finalists, both in the men’s and women’s draws, will qualify for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022.
The conference organized in the Dubai Sports City was graced by the presence of Asia Rugby President Qais Al Dhalai, Khalid Al Awar, Director of Dubai Sports Council’s Sports Events Department; Trevor Gregory, Member of Asia Rugby Executive Committee, Mohamed Sultan Al Zaabi the Secretary-General of UAE Rugby Federation, Johny Stavrinou, CEO Asia Rugby and Apollo Perelini, UAE Rugby Performance Director.
Trevor Gregory, a Member of the Asia Rugby Executive Committee said “Top two teams from each pool will qualify to compete further and fight for a place in the final. Both the teams reaching the final will then qualify for the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022”
He added “A fast-growing global competition only after the Olympics and the football world cup, the Rugby World Cup is a special tournament played once every four years. As compared to the Olympics which has a pool of only 12 teams each for men’s and women’s, the Rugby World Cup provides a larger platform for Asian teams to compete against the best in the world.”
Asanga Seneviratne Chairperson of Asia Rugby Competitions Committee was delighted to announce UAE and in particular, Dubai as the host city for the qualifiers as rugby makes its way to the city of Dubai after hosting two international tournaments in Tashkent, Uzbekistan in September and Doha, Qatar during the current month.
“The qualifier is played only once every four years. So, it’s a big event for us. The top eight Asian men’s and women’s teams will all be competing in Dubai Sports City to give us the top two finalists who will rub shoulders with the best in the world in Cape Town, South Africa next year at the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022. We have full faith in the city of Dubai to deliver another spectacular event.”