The Sam Boyd stadium in Las Vegas will host the fourth leg of the HSBC World Sevens Series, and will likely be packed with well over 30,000 people making their way to Sin City.
Plenty of action is expected for this prestigious rugby weekend, with the Las Vegas Invitational Tournament (LVI) taking place from Wednesday to Saturday. USA Sevens LLC has done a brilliant job with over 170 teams entering the LVI this year - which could be the largest rugby tournament in the world. The atmosphere during the LVI was fantastic, with the International event happening on Saturday February 12th (games from 9.24am to 9.20pm) and Sunday February 13th (games from 9.16am to 4.00pm).
The Pools for Vegas are as follows -
Pool A: England, Argentina, France, Guyana
Pool B: New Zealand, Wales, Kenya, Uruguay
Pool C: Fiji, Australia, Scotland, Canada
Pool D: Samoa, South Africa, USA, Japan
The USA – after coming back in Wellington last weekend to claim the Shield title – will have a difficult first day on home soil. They face a powerful South African side (11.58am), 2009/2010 IRB Series champions Samoa (2.20pm) and Japan (6.25pm). USA Rugby will have match reports on all the Eagles matches during the tournament.
New Zealand will be favourites in Vegas, despite losing captain DJ Forbes to a knee injury. Who else could lift the title? England will be looking to avenge Wellington’s result, while Fiji or Samoa could well surprise us all.
Legendary New Zealand sevens coach Gordon Tietjens said: "I think for the USA if they want to grow the sport they need to get a lot of support out there and for the guys to really put on a great display of Sevens rugby. If they can do that then the Game will grow here. There are a lot of athletes out here that are for real and once they get more numbers playing the Game they will become a real strength in Sevens rugby."
NBC and Universal Sports will be showing several hours of sevens on TV this weekend, which is a major boost for rugby in America.
The TV schedule for Saturday is (all times Eastern):
2.00pm – 3.30pm on Universal Sports
3.30pm – 6.00pm on NBC
6.00pm – 8.00pm on Universal Sports
9.30pm – 1.00am on Universal Sports
Meanwhile in the International Women’s Sevens competition, the USA stormed to a 55-0 win over the Tyrolian Select side and also enjoyed a fantastic 7-5 victory over Canada today. Vix Folayan scored a sensational try in the Canada match, which was converted by Christy Ringgenberg. However, the United States went down 21-15 against the Netherlands earlier in the day, which meant they had to defeat Canada by 18 points to advance.
This leaves the International Women’s semi finals as follows:
Netherlands vs. France
Spain vs. Canada
Also to follow the live scoring on the IRB sevens website: http://www.irbsevens.com/