Wellington Sevens players on parade
Fans turned out in force in central Wellington to see the stars of the Hertz Wellington Sevens take to the streets for the annual pre-tournament parade.
Lambton Quay and Willis St had a carnival atmosphere as the CBD came to a standstill for the spectacle.
All 16 international teams took to floats through central Wellington, and thousands of fans lined the streets to greet them.
Referees led the parade on the first float out, followed by a group of dancers.
Fiji's float received a huge cheer from the crowd, as players threw their arms out and greeted fans with loud chants of "Bula".
But the crowds saved the biggest cheers for the New Zealand team, who high-fived screaming fans as their float went by.
Ahead of the parade, New Zealand's Manawatu-born Taranaki fullback Kurt Baker said the team were excited about the challenge on their home turf.
''It's pretty close to home, it's only about an hour and a half from where I was born so hopefully there's some people in the parade crowd that I know,''he said.
''It seems like all of Wellington gets in behind it. All the teams enjoy it, as well as those people who don't actually go to the rugby itself, so they get to see some players.''
The parade started on the corner of Ballance St and Lambton Quay at 12.45pm, travelled down Lambton Quay and Willis St and finished at Civic Square.
There, the teams are officially welcomed by Mayor Celia-Wade Brown.
The Dominion Post