VANCOUVER (ISN) – The 2012 BC Sevens Series gets underway at Connaught Park in Kitsilano on Saturday when 17 senior teams contest for division titles at the Vancouver Rugby Sevens.
Hosted by Meraloma Rugby Club, the Vancouver event is the first of three official stops on this year’s circuit where club teams will look to accrue points towards a provincial championship. Series tournaments also include the Burnaby Lake Lighthouse Sevens on July 7th and the Abbotsford Rugby Sevens on July 28th. BC Rugby senior club teams competing in the Men’s Elite and Women’s Elite Divisions will be eligible for series points.
The popularity of seven-a-side rugby is on the rise in North America – due in large part to the recent inclusion of the sport in the 2016 Olympics. British Columbia is looking to further the popularity of the abbreviated, high-tempo version of the sport by holding the annual series and increasing participation at the club level. This will be the third annual edition of the BC Sevens Series.
Vancouver Rugby Sevens at Connaught Park (2390 West 10th Ave, Vancouver)
Saturday, June 16th, 2012
Men’s Social: 9:00am start
Women’s Elite: 10:30am start
Men’s Elite: 1:30pm start
Men’s Elite – Spray Cup
The Elite Men’s division sides will be battling for the historic Spray Cup on Saturday, a trophy first presented in 1953 to the Senior Sevens Champion. The Vancouver Rugby Union trophy was competed for on a yearly basis until the 1978 season and was revived again from 1987 to 1996. The trophy was named after BCRU Hall of Fame inductee Robert Spray, an iconic member of the Canadian and British Columbian rugby communities.
Men’s club sides competing for series points on Saturday include defending series champions Burnaby Lake Rugby Club as well as Meraloma Rugby Club, Abbotsford RFC, Seattle RFC and Bayside Athletic Association. Also contesting for the Vancouver Rugby Sevens title in the Men’s Elite competition are USA Super League side Old Puget Sound Beach (OPSB) and representative side Youngbucks, neither of which will be eligible for series points. Burnaby appear to be in top form having won last week’s Buccaneer Sevens in Esquimalt, going undefeated and eventually beating Victoria-based side South Seas Connection in the Cup Final.
Reigning BC Series champions Burnaby Lake Rugby Club will kick off their title defence in a four-team tournament competing against hosts Meraloma Rugby Club, Fraser Valley club Abbotsford RFC and Washington-based Emerald City Mudhens. Burnaby won last year’s Vancouver Rugby Sevens event, defeating the Mudhens 27-10 in the Cup Final.
The men’s social event will feature teams from both the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island and include; Dad’s Army, Young Bucks, Victoria-based Untouchables, Meralomas, Shockers and Chilliwack.
Vancouver Sevens sponsors
The Vancouver Rugby Sevens organizing committee would like to thank tournament sponsors Lionheart Sports, Molson, Chronic Tacos, Ceili’s and SponsorWell. Tournament partners include BC Rugby, Vancouver Rugby Union, Meraloma Rugby Club, UBC Old Boys RFC, and Vancouver Rowing Club. The Vancouver Rugby Sevens long term goal is to promote and develop sevens from age grade through to senior levels with an emphasis of international and grass roots involvement.
For more information on the BC Rugby Sevens Series visit www.bcrugby7s.com