USA aim to join Sevens Series hosts
by Brian Lowe
February 22, 2001

Hot on the heels of America's best ever performance at an international Sevens tournament comes news that the US is still hopeful of being a stop on the World Sevens tour.

USA Rugby has identified hosting a round of the World Series as an initiative that it would like to pursue. Several so-called destination cities have been mentioned as possible venues including Orlando and New York on the east coast, along with Las Vegas and possibly San Francisco in the west.

The project has been on the backburner for the last couple of years and the IRB's initial response has been positive, but the next main phase is the crucial funding issue. The tournament would require significant investment and it's believed that it could take up to three years to become profitable. Director of Business Development, Jack Clark, said no formal bid had yet been made.

"We'd love to have a stop on the tour and if we can develop the right site and commercial package we think that we'd be highly considered. It's something that we believe will happen because exposing sevens rugby to the American market makes sense.

"It would be the single largest rugby event in North America, so it won't happen easily. We need the right venue, the right city and the right date that fits in with the IRB's schedule and then we have to find a way to pay for the whole thing, so it's not a fait accompli."

Clark added that it was an exciting proposition for the world's best players to come to America and that it would help raise the sport's profile in the US.

Sponsorship is seen as the main stumbling block to the plan becoming a reality because USA Rugby doesn't have the resources necessary to underwrite such an undertaking.

The US Eagles made a name for themselves at the Wellington Sevens in New Zealand recently where they earned their first ever World Series points by making it through to the semi-finals.

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