New Zealand eyes up bid for World Cup Sevens

19:23, Mar 04 2014
DJ Forbes
HANDS UP: New Zealand Rugby wants to host the next World Cup Sevens tournament.

New Zealand Rugby is considering a bid to host the next World Cup Sevens tournament.

New Zealand is one of 12 countries that have expressed an interest in hosting the 2018 tournament.

They have to file a formal submission by early December and the successful host will be announced by the International Rugby Board in May next year.

New Zealand has never hosted a World Cup Sevens tournament despite being the dominant nation in the game.

New Zealand are the current men's and women's world champions after winning the two titles at the last World Cup in Moscow late last year.

The World Cup has now been moved to a four year cycle, falling between Olympics where the sport will make its debut in Rio in 2016.

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The other countries who have expressed an interest in hosting the tournament are England, Fiji, Hong Kong, Netherlands, Portugal, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, USA, and Wales.

New Zealand may be under pressure for its place on the World Series where Wellington has been a regular and popular destination.

The growing global appeal of the game - riding high on its Olympics inclusion - sees 25 countries looking to host a tournament on the next World Series schedule.

They are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, England, Fiji, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Russia, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, USA, and Wales.

Countries must make their formal application by the end of June with the schedule confirmed in October.

The IRB will clearly be under to expand the schedule from the current nine tournaments.

New Zealand have dominated the World Series and lead the current championship narrowly from South Africa with five events completed.

Fairfax Media